On Wax: 2 Chainz, Solange, DaBaby + More
ON WAX IS A WEEKLY TAKE UPDATING YOU ON THE POCKET OF CULTURE KNOWN AS HIP-HOP. WE BRING YOU EVERYTHING FROM BREAKING NEWS TO ALBUM DROPS, JAIL TIME AND WHO’S BEEFING WITH WHO.
Rap or Go to the League
ATL’s own, 2 Chainz, has returned with his fifth studio album. Rap or Go to the League is easily one of the most real titles in recent memory, showcasing the unfortunate reality for Black kids in lower-income areas. This is a different 2 Chainz; he plays a husband, as well as father of three who is more than a trap rapper (which LeBron James being involved may have had something to do with that). Regardless, 2 Chainz has never been more socially aware as he uses his platform to share his knowledge. However, 2 Chainz is showing he can still have fun and still flex a little on tracks like “Forgiven,” “Sam,” “Whip,” “2 Dollar Bill” and “Momma I Hit A Lick.”
The list of producers and featured artists showcases 2 Chainz’s ability to do anything. From a West Coast flavored beat from DJ Mustard, to a soulful 9th Wonder beat, to a hard-hitting Honorable C.N.O.T.E. beat, to a Pharrell beat in a 6/8 time signature, 2 Chainz does it all—not to mention features from everyone. Ariana Grande sings a pop hook, while Kendrick Lamar reminds us why he’s the best. Lil Wayne also gives the rap game a run for it’s money, alongside an eccentric E-40 verse.
2 Chainz has come a long way from his debut. He’s climbed the ranks of hip-hop, and is one of the few from Atlanta to evolve into something grand. While he may be overlooked, it should be known that 2 Chainz is a top ten contender in this modern rap game.
Out of nowhere, H-Town’s sweetheart, Solange, has returned. Calling her an R&B artist would be an insult, as on her new album, When I Get Home, is an avant-garde musical project that is perfection. Jazzy at its core, Solange bends genres with the help of producers Tyler, The Creator, Steve Lacy, Blood Orange, Metro Boomin, Panda Bear and Pharrell. All in all, Solange crafts a unique project. She embraces the current trends, while warping them in her own style. She also manages to snatch Playboi Carti and Gucci Mane for features. When I Get Home is definitely an experience, and at the end pays tribute to her home, Houston. Solange crafted a solid record, and the entire album is definitely worth a listen.
Juice WRLD Keeps it Emo
With Juice WRLD gaining more and more traction, it seems this emo rap wave is here to stay. The Chicago artist has dropped his second single from his upcoming Death Race For Love album. The song is titled “Hear Me Now,” and it is another tune from the artist about a past heartbreak. With the autotune pop punk influenced rap running rampant, it’ll be interesting to see how long it’ll stay in the game.
DaBaby Drops New Project
On the surface, you’d think DaBaby is another dime a dozen trap artist, but looking further, you’ll find a ferocious trap lyricist. On his new album, Baby On Baby, the Charolette rapper shines bright. His ability to write a crazy verse, alongside great catchy hooks, leads to a solid project. The album features some hard-hitting joints mixed with some wavy tunes. While features are nice, DaBaby doesn’t need to rely on them, as he carries his own very well. Baby on Baby is definitely recommended if you like trap or lyrical rap.
Little Simz Strikes Again!
If you’ve been following the ever-rising UK hip-hop scene, you might have stumbled upon Little Simz. The female MC is one of the most insane rappers, and fortunately has a great grasp for music, as she bangs out another amazing album. GREY Area showcases some of Simz best verses, alongside the live-recorded instrumentals, which equals perfection. As the title suggests, Simz explores the grey areas of being an adult. Her ability to tell a story with her insane flows and bars, really makes you reconsider your top five. Please go listen to GREY Area, then go back and listen to everything else in her killer discography.
Revisiting Lil Reese
In case you missed it, DJ Akademiks sat down with Chicago rapper, Lil Reese. What makes this interview a must watch is that when you rewind back to 2012, a fresh crop of artists came forward. One of those artists was Lil Reese, so it makes you wonder what happened. This interview gives Reese the chance to address certain situations (even an altercation, which had him wanting to leave his original deal in order to be independent).
Until next time, it’s On Wax.
– Dyllan E. & Hiram