I don’t know what’s gotten into me man, but lately I can’t stop listening to Kyuss’s Welcome to Sky Valley. I was walking my dog earlier tonight and started skanking like Axl Rose askin’ for some reggae down an abandoned Melrose as me and Nora Ephron (pictured above) were bumping “100 Degrees.” But there’s something about “Gardenia,” maybe the way it just sort of chugs along or the fact that it sort of seems like the lyrics are about having sex with a truck that really does it for me. Anyways, this is a slapper.
I feel like someone could sample and/or rap over a loop from the middle part of this. Or maybe that’s a terrible idea, I don’t know. Either way I’m out, peace bro.
Reviewed a Majid Jordan show at a cemetery. Between the cold, beautiful music; the beautifully dressed people; and the hot, beautiful space, it felt v aspirational. It also kind of sucked. I’d like to say thanks to my editor Larry for cutting my truly shitty joke about the Majid Jordan album cover looking like an X-Files promo shot.
Interviewed the extremely talented and extremely cool designer DBruze about his extremely limited run of shirts he did for Future. One of the more interesting people I’ve had the privilege of speaking with lately.
Went to the Dominican Republic with my mans Holy Mountain to cover the country’s only indie music festival. By far THE chillest time I’ve had at a music fest.
Chaperoned a Migos concert in Orange County. Rarely has a show felt as chaotic as it did that night, I got the sense that a lot of the kids there were there specifically to party. The show started extremely late, which meant that by the time Migos went on, many people in the audience had been figgity figgity fucked up for several hours. People were passing out to my left and throwing up to my right. It was great. Or at least memorable.
Wrote about what it’s like to listen to Kanye West rap about taking Lexapro as someone who deals with depression myself. This was, obviously, pretty personal. But I’m happy I wrote it.
Attended Real 92.3’s Birthday Bash. Nicki Minaj was great, but DJ Khaled—who brought out Snoop Dogg, French Montana, and Busta Rhymes, and ended his set by announcing, “WATCH OUT FOR ‘THEY'”—was even better.
Profiled Álvaro Díaz, the hottest thing smokin’ out of Puerto Rico.
So I’ve been going through a period of listening to lots and lots of Soulja Boy, for reasons that will become overwhelmingly clear later. But as I’ve been combing through his discography it really feels like a lot of the music Soulja was making five years ago inadvertently formed the backbone of how lots and lots of rap sounds right now. I don’t really want to tip my hand too much, but even if you don’t agree with my theory it’s hard to deny that from like 2009-2012 or so he had a ridiculously fruitful run of mixtapes. A lot of them have like 5 or so really ridiculously great songs on them, and it can be sort of a chore to separate the wheat from the chaff. So, since I don’t have a job and I really like Soulja Boy, I went ahead and assembled a pretty tight two-hour zip of extremely ridiculously good Soulja Boy songs. I included tracks from 1Up, Skate Boy, Pretty Boy Millionaires, The King, The Last Crown, 21, Juice, Plug Talk, Obey, plus a couple more that I’ve already forgotten, plus a couple features he did, plus a song I nicked from an old Martorialist compilation (long time lurker, first time admitting I read it no matter how many times he makes fun of me). I also included probably 3/4 of Mario and Domo vs. the World, which Soulja made with Young L of The Pack and is one of the best mixtapes of the 2000s. I did not include anything from The DeAndre Way, because you should just pay money for that.
ANYWAYS, download the comp here. I would say I apologize for leaving your favorite Soulja Boy mixtape cut out, but I won’t because I don’t actually care (unless you are Soulja Boy).
The remix of the Lil Kim/Charlie Wilson/T-Pain masterpiece “Download” is, well, a lot. Featuring The-Dream and Official First Web Native Rap Star Soulja Boy, the track doubles, triples, quadruples down on the conceit of the original, which flips Zapp’s “Computer Love” for the social networking era. The-Dream tenderly shooby-doo-wops and then shit-talks bloggers (always a great tactic), and Soulja Boy talks about iChat, Twitter, and the nonexistent SpellFinder. Extremely chill, but not as chill as T-Pain referring to his boner as a “hard drive.” And even though Zapp’s version isn’t an explicit rewrite of Kraftwerk’s “Computer Love,” it’s pretty inarguable that the former wouldn’t exist without the latter. Which is to say, I would like to formally add this song to the list of reasons why Soulja Boy came up out the water just as important as Kraftwerk.
OK first of all, I can’t even begin to talk about how incredible an album title Thizziana Stoned and the Temple of Shrooms is. We cannot continue this extremely short blog post without establishing this vital fact. Second of all, we must acknowledge the excellence of Droop-E’s beat, which I’d need an entire 33 1/3 book to discuss. Third of all (this is not a thing), “Slobba” is an extremely good song about blowjobs.
Even though he’s very much a known quantity, Snootie Wild is sort of a tough sell—he’s essentially a quasi-soul singer with a deep Memphis accent who’s at his best when he’s talking about all sorts of street shit and flyness over spacey beats, a la “Fashion” or “I Can’t Help It,” the track were having a fireside chat about right here. On the other hand, he’s had a couple of bona fide hits in “Yayo” and “Made Me”—the Boosie and Jeremiah-featuring remix of which is almost comically solid—and he’s signed with Yo “I Made ‘Down in the DMs’” Gotti, who after his decade or so of making regionally renowned quality street murrrrrzic is finally experiencing a genuine pop crossover moment, even if his pop crossover moment has come in the form of a novelty song about sexting.
But, yeah. Snootie Wild. “I Can’t Help It.” It’s good. You should listen to it, because it will enrich your life.
Look man, Dru Down would be one of my favorite rappers ever of all time even if he and I didn’t have the same name. Dude was dripping with pimpery and excellence (both sartorial and sonic), squeezed out two straight up perfect albums, and as a pure rapper has probably gotten… better… with… age? In rap I feel like this happens more than people tend to admit, or perhaps are fine with admitting it but they just don’t care because the internet is a cesspool that rewards youth and beauty. I guess I’m trying to say I’m 26 and have grey hair and therefore have a lot of career anxiety so I can’t imagine what it must be like for someone who is actually old. ANYWAYS, the point is no matter what job you have if you do it a bunch for like ten years you’re gonna get better at it, y’know?
Uh I kinda got off topic there. I guess just listen to this posse cut Dru Down was on off Cobra’s Playaz in Paradise from 1996.
Pretty good, right? BUT, below, listen to FaceTheStreets’ “G’z and Hustlaz,” a slap from a few months ago that Dru takes the last verse on. The track takes “This Is How We Do It” and basically turns it into a hyphy track, which, like, fine, sure. That was bound to happen at some point, maybe it has already happened multiple times. Point is it’s not the most original idea in the world, but the beat to this is slamming enough that you could fart on it and it’d still sound kinda hot. But Dru Down, who comes in around 2:35, just fucking parachutes down into the beat and starts DESTROYING everything in sight. He does the stop-start flow thing he’s great at doing, but it seems like he’s weaving through the beat with the short of casual intricacy that means you’ll probably notice his shrieks and general mastery of inflection before you realize he’s just riding circles around the whole affair.