Shaggytheairhead – “Wakin’ Up” review

Shaggytheairhead is a 27 year old producer, rapper & fashion designer from Las Vegas, Nevada who came to my attention after producing one of my all-time favorite Ouija Macc songs “Nardwuar Glocc” back in 2018. He would later go on to become an in-house producer for Psychopathic Records, allegedly having 9 beats on the Insane Clown Posse’s upcoming 16th album Yum Yum Bedlam. But with the 21st annual Gathering of the Juggalos going down this weekend, Shaggy’s dropping his full-length debut in the midst of his performances.

After the “Shaggythelegend” intro, the first song “The Gem / I Rap” is a bit of a jazzy boom bap kickstarter to the album with a murky switch up during the 2nd half saying it’s about time he snapped & turning losses into profit whereas the Trade Voorhees-produced “Reminisce” takes a cloudier direction speaking on getting older. “About Nothin’ / Bake It” is another 2-parter with a bit of a mystical vibe at the beginning saying he doesn’t have to brag at all, but then switches up into something trippier saying instrumental meditation is his only medication.

Meanwhile on “In the Road”, we have Shaggytheairhead enlisting Killatime to show off their lyrical abilities a boom bap beat inspired by the classic Joey Bada$$ tape 1999 leading into “Wakin’ Up / Steady Learnin’” starting off by atmospherically telling cats to catch him sleeping with his eyes open & then switching into a eerier tone proclaiming that he’s cursed. Darby O’Trill & Ouija Macc tag along for the riot-inducing “Act Up” produced by the homie Devereaux leading into “This Is Hell / Ceiling” somberly opening up about depression & later going into dark ambient turf comparing himself to the grim reaper.

“Vengeance” has a much quirkier beat as the wicked clowns Violent J & Shaggy 2 Dope themselves come in to talk about wanting revenge, but then he & Trade Voorhees follow it up by asking if they’ll miss them when they’re gone on the trap banger “Ghost”. He later calls out those who were hating on him for the cloudy “Jealously Woes I”, but then “Goin’ Goin’ Goin’” is an intoxicating cut about blowing up whether people like it or not.

“Rain Rain” works in some dusty drums & wavy synths to say his happiness has been gone while the song “Feel This Way” has a moodier tone sonically saying he’ll never change. The penultimate track “You Would Stay” is of course a funky love ballad & “Death to the Ego” psychedelically calls to humble himself.

I didn’t know what to expect from Wakin’ Up given that we’ve only heard Shaggytheairhead rapping a few times prior, but I must admit that this was a pretty impressive debut. Easily the best batch of songs that he’s crafted yet in my opinion. His lyrical skills have gotten better since the early days & it’s really awesome to hear him taking on a diverse range of sounds.

Score: 4/5

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