KAYTRAMINÉ is a newly formed MC/producer superduo consisting of Portland emcee, singer/songwriter & music video director Aminé as well as Haitian-Canadian producer & deejay KAYTRANADA. One of whom I was introduced to in the 2017 XXL Freshman Class & the other notable for being 1/2 of The Celestics with his younger brother Lou Phelps The first time we heard these guys cross paths was when Kaytradamus laced 3 joints off Aminé’s sophomore mixtape Calling Brío, but are reuniting to release a full-length debut of their own.
“Who He Iz” is a groovy opener to the album calling himself misunderstood & living where the coochie live whereas “letstalkaboutit” featuring Spreadie Gibbs discuss their wealth over a glistening instrumental. “4eva” gives off a more hip house vibe to it with some afro house & contemporary R&B undertones refusing to let anything come between his forever leading into “Westside” works in some string sections talking about being hot & cold at the same time not wanting to be compared to these fools out here.
Moving on from there, we have Big Sean coming into the picture for “Master P” blending these hi-hats with a vocal sample as they tell everyone in the game right now to watch it just before “Rebuke” is a pop rap/contemporary R&B ballad with some elements of neo-soul sprinkled in calling himself the type that you remember when you go to sleep. “Sossaup” talks about upgrading his bitch with a wavier beat in the fold, but then “STFU3” continues the trilogy that Good for You started & 1.5 continued with a J Dilla inspired sound.
The song “Ugh Ugh” brings back the synths talking about hustling 5 days of the week except for balling on Fridays & cuddling with his girl on Sundays while the penultimate track “Eye” featuring Snoop Dogg goes back into hip house turf 1 last time so the trio can discuss having to get focused locked in & never being unbelievable. “K&A (KAYTRANADA & Aminé)” ties up the album by talking about doin’ what we want ’cause we want accompanied by an impeccably smooth ass instrumental.
If this is only the beginning of what’s to come from KAYTRAMINÉ, then it has me anticipating what’s in store from them in the future because this is a highly enjoyable debut album from the duo. KAYTRANADA’s production gives heavy summer vibes, Aminé gives some of the finest performances of his career, the feature list is brief yet tight & I’m really amazed by simply how well everything flows together throughout the 34 minutes.
This is the sophomore full-length album from Atlanta, Georgia rapper Sharc. Breaking out as a Pi’erre Bourne protégé signing to the South Carolina recording artist & in-demand producer’s very own Interscope Records imprint SossHouse Records, he would drop a few singles & land some feature placements until dropping his own debut 47 Meters Down literally the week after appearing on “Drunk & Nasty” off the 5th & final installment of his mentor’s Life of Pi’erre series. But coming off producing both Still Trapp’n & Chavo’s World 3 earlier this month, Pi’erre’s keeping the hot streak going by lacing Sharc Wave in it’s entirety ahead of J Billz’ full-length debut Streetz’ Hottest Young’n in a couple weeks.
The instrumental throughout the opener “Walk Down” has these retro-video game like synths & hi-hats so he call out every single motherfucker that’s jackin’ his swag out here whereas “Sicario” switches it up with a more euphoric sound talking about going pistol for pistol. “PMR 30” laces more hi-hats & synths making it known that he ain’t afraid to spray rounds from his strap just before “1 of 1” is a piano trap ballad reminding how much of a threat he is.
“Skeleton Mansion” incorporates some woodwinds & more hi-hats so he can stick while your hood up playing with handguns since he from New York even though his shawty got a fetish for rifles, but then “Super Bowl” goes for a more horn-based sound talking about how SossHouse stays winning without competition. “Members” is a more keyboard/trap crossover saying he in the mood, but then “Miami” has a cloudier vibe talking about going through shit.
Meanwhile, “Hashtag” begins the last leg of Sharc Wave with a woozy beat detailing a bitch that simply wants to act bad while “Harley Quinn” is a cloudy trap banger comparing his lover to that of the Joker’s titular ex & Suicide Squad member. The song “Soss Love” is a triumphant dedication to his squad while the penultimate track “Brixton” has a futuristically bassy approach talking about swimming instead of surfing. “Talm Bout” on the other hand ties up the album with a thunderous closer discussing the lifestyle that he lives.
Sosshouse has been on a tear these past 3 weeks with all these albums that Pi’erre’s been producing for his artists because so far, Sharc Wave is my 2nd favorite of the 3 behind the very one we got last weekend Chavo’s World 3 & has me wondering how J Billz will properly introduce himself on Streetz’ Hottest Young’n in merely a couple weeks. Sharc sounds recharged throughout his performances as he surfs over his mentor’s signature production style.
This is the official full-length debut album from Dallas, Texas recording artist Oodaredevil. Getting his footing in off the strength of his 2019 debut EP Dr. Daredevil after early collab after being featured on some of Yeat’s early material, he would continue to make his presence in the trap scene known by building up a discography for himself by putting out a total of 10 more EPs & even a couple mixtapes. He’s just coming fresh off Diary of an Inky Kid 2.5 a couple months ago & of course Diary of an Inky Kid 2 back in February, but all those tapes & EPs have all been leading up to rawr.
The title track is a moody trap opener to the album describing feeling like Mowgli since he be in the jungle whereas “Dangerous” has some grin piano chords & hi-hats courtesy of Kevi with co-production from Henney of the 808 Mafia & Svdominik talking about not playing with them because of how menacing he is. “Zone” makes it clear that he’s in his lane & that no one else can get on it with a bit of a psychedelic trap flare to the instrumental that is until “Maniac” talking about going crazy over a more quirkier beat this time around.
“woahwoah” on the other hand a hazier sound to it discussing riding around in a foreign & blowin’/shootin’ up the spot just before “Bonquisha” refers himself as to a monster than needs to be fed accompanied with Lucid taking a more minimal approach behind the boards. “Both Ways” makes it known that his brand new shit ain’t rinky dinky even though there’s not a whole lot to say about the instrumental just before “Bad Feet” talks about needing a mansion & a couple acres over a quasi-futuristic trap beat cooked up with the help of 20, Safari, Ds2Krayz & Jakik
Meanwhile, “Loose” has a cloudier tone to it courtesy of Bugz Ronin responding to being asked what’s good by saying that it’s simply up leading into “Good Morning” featuring Keen Cortex continues to delve deeper into a more chilled out vibe as the 2 talk about first thing they say in people in the morning is “Diamonds hittin’, they glistenin’”. “Kimjun” talks about bringing the thunder over a peppily cloudy beat from Steven Shaeffer & Kelewya while the song “ok 🆗” blends some hi-hats & flutes to go into a more repetitive direction lyrically.
The penultimate track “King of the Jungle” continues to expand on the sounds of the previous cuts with more woodwind-infused trap production except Kavi & Spaceman elevate it to the next level talking about trying to be humble these days & the round the album up, “2 Phones” admits that he don’t know how to act & that he’s in lane preceding to ask if anyone else is in theirs with Mingo & Juice delivering a more playful vibe with the instrumental.
For those of you who’ve been following Oodaredevil through the features on those couple early Yeat EPs, this day has been a long time coming & it’s certainly safe to say that he pulls off a full-length debut album worth revisiting. One that new fans can familiarize themselves with as to who he his stylistically & personally too with it’s flavorful trap production & captivating performances.
Planetary is a 44 year old MC from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania emerging within the underground as 1/2 of the duo OuterSpace with Crypt the Warchild as well as a member of the Army of the Pharaohs collective led by Vinnie Paz. He’s even landed quite a bit of solo features on various albums over the past couple decades too, but it hasn’t been until now where he’s putting out a full-length debut of his own fully produced by his son Elemxnt.
“Ruin Ya Life” is a solemn boom bap opener bringing the truth to the light whereas “You Know Who I Am” works in some more kicks & snares so the man can talk about everyone knowing exactly who the fuck he is as he expands. “Where the Legends Are” has a more morbid atmosphere to it setting out to finish what he started that is until “Vainglory” featuring Elemxnt, Kxng Charisma & Trxstworthy finds the quartet talking about being overly vain over an unsettling piano instrumental.
Meanwhile, “Holy Water” takes a more haunting route aspiring to excel just before “I Get It” switches it up by energetically talking about giving them all that dope shit & wanting all the smoke possible. “The Bicentennial” has a really cool organ melody throughout keeping it 200 calling himself the best in the building in general leading into “Self Destruction” featuring WRD Life goes into sample-based boom bap turf as they both talk about being sent to win.
“It’s Elementary” begins the final leg of the album with some chimes, kicks & snares making it clear that they shining with the darker days in the past along with slapping OGs prior to “Get Slumped” is a rugged ode to getting your shit fuck up with a fitting piano instrumental. “1 2” reunites with Elemxnt on the mic 1 last time to belittle their opposition with an echoing boom bap, but then “Keep On” ties up the album with a tearjerking ballad about time trying you & encouraging everyone to never stop for any given reason.
Considering that no one in OuterSpace has ever dropped a solo effort until now, I was a bit surprised when Project Pluto was announced yet it didn’t bog down any expectations considering how much of an AotP fan I’ve been since high school & it definitely has me looking forward to what he has to offer by himself down the road. Elemxnt’s production game is sounding better & his dad mixing more personal topics with the usual hardcore bars one would expect.
This is the 3rd EP from New Jersey rapper, producer & singer-songwriter Russ. Dropping off a total of 11 mixtapes on SoundCloud from 2011 up to 2014, he wound up signing Columbia Records a couple years later & made his full-length debut last year with There’s Really a Wolf. Quickly becoming one of hip hop’s most polarizing figures in recent memory in the process by being a “fake activist” against drugs & then there’s his infamous 2016 interview with DJ Vlad the culture vulture where he literally said “we need to blame producers for all the wack music today”. His 2018 follow-up ZOO kinda caught my interest due to“The Flute Song”, but the end result of it being taken over by this annoyingly bitter demeanor. Shake the Snowglobe was slightly better & his debut EP CHOMP in 2020 ended up being his best work so far, although it’s because the features & producers carried. Funny enough, the same thing happened on the sequel a year & a half ago. But to prelude the 3rd installment, he’s rockin’ it by himself on CHOMP 2.5.
“Wicked Race”’ is a self-produced opener with no real stand-out lines even though the instrumental that he cooks up here is actually pretty decent whereas “Blow the Whistle” calls this a warmup to CHOMP 3 dropping this summer & even though Statik Selektah’s boom bap production is groovy, bars like “Stand tall like who? Like Tyler” & that he “never had to chase clout or do a bunch of weird shit” when he started to blow by constantly making a narcissistically bitter ass-hat of himself.
The “Buckle Up Freestyle” is more sample-based courtesy of Havoc talking about calling himself out on my bullshit & luckily he picked up, which I’m actually happy to hear him acknowledge that because it takes a real man to own up to his mistakes & don’t have any personal vendetta against the guy whatsoever. “Easy” weaves in some soulful chops from The Alchemist talking about showin’ why no one can fuck with him lyrically even though he literally made a whole fuckin’ tape where the features outshined him although the self-improvement line I felt was sincere.
“Reflection” has a more summery vibe to it thanks to Boi-1da & the melodic delivery that Russ executes here just isn’t doing it for me at all which is a shame considering it’s overall theme of rarely getting a second to put himself first. “Perfectionist” closes out the EP with a soulful boom bap ballad that 9th Wonder cooked up confessing that he had 32 sessions with a therapist about being a recovering purist although the “in my Depeche Mode” line was cringe.
Although the first 2 installments of the CHOMP series were loaded with guest verses, the fact that Russ took the risk of proving that he doesn’t need features for a project to be good is admirable. However, this is as average as the predecessors. The production is remarkable, but the songwriting & performances from Russ himself are both mid at best. That being said though: I can’t deny that he’s trying to improve himself both artistically & personally and continue to hope for that down the road.
This is the 14th full-length album from Ghanan emcee Recognize Ali. This guy has been a dominant force in the underground from his vast discography of LPs, mixtapes & EPs within the last decade or so to the stellar feature performances that he’s provided for numerous artists. Some standouts in his ever-growing catalog to me personally include the Giallo Point-produced Back 2 Mecca, the Stu Bangas-produced Guerilla Dynasty & the Bronze Nazareth-produced Season of the 7 to only name a few. He’s just coming off Back to Mecca II & is reuniting with Stu Bangas to drop Guerilla Dynasty 2.
After the intro, the first song “In a Rebel’s Mind” is an eerie boom bap opener talking about being on another level with the MCin’ whereas “Guerilla Warfare” works in some pianos, kicks & snares getting in his battle rap bag saying he slays rappers for the fun of it. “Put You to Sleep” jumps on top of a boom bap instrumental with a crooning sample claiming none of y’all are realer or iller than him leading into “Pulverized” featuring Lord Goat bringing you the hardcore over some string sections.
“Full Clip” has a futuristic boom bap quality to the beat letting it be known that your whole crew can catch a whole round just before “Get Folded” talks about hating actors that play as rappers with a dingy ass instrumental. “Real Housewives” by the Dueling Experts brings back the pianos aiming to leaving heads backwards whenever this comes on & after the “Che Guerilla” skit, “Sheep’s Clothing” featuring Eff Yoo &Spit Gemz sonically feels like something ripped out of a monster movie as they deliver a catastrophe in the making.
Ali begins the final leg of the album with the intergalactic-leaning boom bap joint “Eat What You Kill” tackling the titular metaphor while “0 Smoke” eerily makes it clear that he’ll start clapping motherfuckers. The track “Murder Was the Case” featuring Boob Bronx & Sage Infinite is a rock/boom bap crossover informing what the case they gave them was that is until the final song “Bearer of Bad News” prior to the outro giving off a scary atmosphere preparin’ y’all for an ass-kicking.
Back to Mecca II in my opinion was Jamal’s best album since Season of the 7 & my expectations were already high going into this but needless to say, Guerilla Dynasty 2 is his finest album of this year as of me writing this because I’m sure he could drop at least 1 or 2 within the next 6 months. The feature performances are mostly ok, but he & Stu Bangas really elevate their chemistry to the next level here building upon what made the previous Guerilla Dynasty as great as it was.
This is the 25th EP from New Orleans duo the $uicideboy$. Consisting of Ruby da Cherry & $crim, these guys released a plethora of projects within the last decade whether it be the Kill Your$elf saga & Eternal Grey or even I WANNA DIE IN NEW ORLEANS & the Travis Barker-produced Live Fast, Die Whenever. The boy$’ just dropped their last album Sing Me a Lullaby, My Sweet Temptation over the summer & are now coming off the EP they dropped last weekend Yin Yang Tapes: Spring Season for the sequel Summer Season.
After the intro, the first song “5 ‘n the Mornin’” is an occult trap opener with the boy$ declaring that players never die while the penultimate track “Starry 9” has more of a Memphis-inspired sound to it à la one of my all-time favorite groups & one of the Nawlins duo’s biggest inspirations Three 6 Mafia sonically so they can rep the 7th ward. “Bloody ‘98” featuring Ghostmane concludes the first half of the Yin Yang Tapes tetralogy with the trio collaborating for the first time with a demonic trap closer & all 3 MCs gelling with one another better than one would anticipate discussing their killer instincts.
I can only assume Fall is coming next Friday & eventually Winter the weekend after, but I really can’t complain because this is a tad bit superior to Spring in my personal opinion & it has me anticipating the 6 songs from the other 2 installments later on in the month ahead of Grey Sheep III afterwards. Blanco & Wetto continue to build upon the cloudy trap sounds of the predecessor with their production here as they keep spitting some gangsta-laced braggadocio for us to vibe to in time for next month.
Heem is a 30 year old MC from Buffalo, New York who caught my attention in 2020 after becoming of a protege of Benny the Butcher & signing to his MNRK Music Group imprint Black Soprano Family Records. He also made a few appearances on the label’s showcase EP prior to dropping his debut mixtape Long Story Short that same winter & a debut EP High Art last spring, but is up next at bat in the BSF camp to drop a full-length debut.
“Reasonable Doubt” is a soulful boom bap opener to kick things off admitting that he’s feeling better than ever since the last time we heard from him whereas “Radio Raheem” has more of a Daringer influence to the beat asking what you really know about dope game cocaine. “Mob Business” featuring Benny the Butcher & Styles P says it all with the strongest instrumental on the album thus far courtesy of Rick Hyde just before “Caper Boy” works in some more kicks & snares talking about running up 7 figures.
Meanwhile, “Black Sheep” picks up with a piano boom bap crossover telling y’all his story as a lil’ ghetto boy from the east side of Buffalo leading into “Cocaine County” featuring Conway the Machine keeps it raw sonically talking about drowning in the dope & calling to send a rescue boat in to save them. “Picture Me Rollin’” goes chipmunk soul acknowledging that he’s come a long way from the hard white, but then “Tears of Blood” is a boom bap-inflicted ode to his real street homies.
“Mamie Lee” chops up what I assume is a gospel sample paying tribute to his grandmother while “Guilty By Association” featuring Rick Hyde returns to the boom bap talking about being products of crack money. “Long Way Home” saying it just might be do or die at the end of the day over a pillowy beat while “The Motto” dives back into the basement talking about being from the streets. The penultimate track “Young N***a Old N***a” incorporates a piano instrumental from DJ Green Lantern calling himself the chosen one & “Same Ole G” jumps on top of some organs making it known he ain’t changed.
Long Story Short was a great introduction to Heem & what he’s capable of doing on the mic, but From the Cradle to the Game gives listeners a more introspective look into his background for anyone wanting to know more about him. Although I think the production on that previous tape is better by a hair, the concept presented here of him growing up a good child & jumping into the game after going to the line is cohesively laid out with a brief yet tight feature list.
Chavo is a 29 year old rapper from Atlanta, Georgia notable for being the son of Benzino & the older brother of Coi Leray. However, my introduction to him was when South Carolina recording artist & producer Pi’erre Bourne signed him to his very own Interscope Records imprint SossHouse Records. His 2018 debut mixtape Hood Luva was solid & the sophomore tape Mixed Emotions was even better in my eyes until the full-length debut Chavo’s World continued to show his elevation. However, the sequel generally received moderate reception & his debut EP Hood Luva 2 is considered to be his weakest body of work. The next EP Blue Hills returned to a more mixed response, but is now re-enlisting Pi’erre to fully produce his 3rd album.
“I Love It” lets it all off with a synthesizer-based trap instrumental explaining that he be getting money whereas “Fort Worth” featuring Sharc works in some strings & hi-hats so they can both talk about pulling up to Texas. “B.M.D. (Bitches, Money, Drugs)” is a flute/trap hybrid detailing the 3 things that he loves the most in this world just before “Black Tint” has a more vibrant feeling to it boasting that he feels like the president when riding around in the titular kind of whip.
Meanwhile, “Queen of the Demand” brings back the synths to acknowledge that his girl is well aware of the fact that Chavo gon’ fuck on her friends if she fucking her also leading into “I.D.W.T.F.N.L.W.U.” (I Don’t Want to Fall n Love With U)” is a shimmering trap cut about not wanting to fall in love with this bitch he’s talking about. “HEY!” keeps things wavy telling this woman who wants to her to smash at a party to not pay attention to nobody, but then “Hoola Hoop” dives into more atmospherical territory talking about spinning around after dropping the addy.
“Procedure” blends the sounds of a submarine & these synthesizers so he can show off his luxuries that come with a life of fame while “For Me (Babygirl)” is a catchy trap ballad with some pop rap elements throughout a confesses that he don’t know if this chick is his soulmate. “Up Up Up” incorporates a booming instrumental telling this woman not to be a stranger while “Postman” featuring Veeze finds the pair over a hazy beat talking about running laps all year long.
Moving on from there, “Call on Me” has a more minimal sound telling his lover to drop the addy whenever while “Hiccups” dives into moodier turf talking about the game needing him & that none of his boys are victims. The song “Serena, Venus” gives off a more trippier aesthetic describing this Brooklyn girl he met seeing the difference between Chavo & her own man while the penultimate track “Shiesty” talks about how reckless the homies be over synth-strings & hi-hats. “System” though is a futuristic closer with his lover making it clear she’ll catch a case for him.
As disappointing as Hood Luva 2 & Blue Hills have been, I still respectfully maintain that this guy has an overall discography superior to his younger sister’s & Chavo’s World 3 further solidifies that because this is a dope return to form for him. Pi’erre’s production here is refreshing considering that was the biggest issue I had with both of those previous EPs & Chavo himself sounds more focused throughout his performances.
This is the debut EP from Japanese-American transplant 8tari. Born in Tokyo, she moved to New York as a child & began piano lessons before returning to Japan at when she was 12. However, a freak accident with a prototype blockchain connected gashapon machine outside of a keki shop near Takeshita Street resulted in 8tari being decentralized & becoming an NFT. Lost in the network & no longer able to physically touch a piano, she began making beats that soon began to fill the back streets of Shibuya after down-resizing them for transmission at human audible levels. Renown west coast producer DJ Muggs eventually took 8tari under his wing & is producing her debut EP in full.
“Neon Sunburn” is a dreary piano opener to the EP that I can only visualize serving as the soundtrack to a rainy ass day whereas “The Guns of Brixton” continues on with a lo-fi instrumental cover of the Clash song of the same name off their iconic 3rd album London Calling. The penultimate track “Paradise” has a more climactic vibe to it almost as if it were playing in the background of an important scene to a really good movie leading into “Bad Scene, Everyone’s Fault” ending the EP with another cover except this time it’s the joint off Jawbreaker’s 4th & final album Dear You.
What we have on Lofi Punk here is essentially Muggs dabbling with chillhop for a duration of 4-songs, 15 minutes & it makes me wonder if he plans on traveling further down this rabbit hole in the future because it’s a really interesting change of pace for the seasoned west coast producer. The covers truly make the EP live up to it’s name, but the 2 original compositions are an even better homage to the style pioneered by the late Nujabes.