A Quick Survey Of Recent Rap and R&B
Just when I was starting to think 'gee it was all happening earlier this year in the rap, ratchet, trap and R&B zones, but what now?' I was going back to hardcore, jungle and speed garage etc. (Reynolds has more on breakbeat garage here, loving that Ruff Da Menace track 2 F In Ruff (So What)). Then a bunch of new releases appear! Mostly free mixtapes but some albums too.
Next is Ain't Nothin Bigger Than The B. King Kev turns up with Bread Winner Kane on this collaborative effort. Kevin Gates plays the sidekick to Kane on this mixtape which is weird and a bit wrong as he's the King. It's a bit like Elvis playing sidekick to Barry Mannilow. I don't think Kane is Kev's heir but there's plenty of kicks here although this tape is long and I mean bloody long like a Swans album. Perhaps we could all edit it down by about half.
Tinashe's album proper has dropped after last year's mixtape Black Water. Aquarius of course contains the choice hit single 2 On. The thing is there aren't any other DJ Mustard productions here which was initially disappointing but I'm gettin used to it now. We've got some luscious tunes on this album and some that stray a little too close to the overtly but slightly boring pop side. She's at her best when it's post-millennial R&B, better than Beyonce and almost up there with Cassie. Tinashe's still at street level and is givin us the real edge that we want particularly on All Hands On Deck which is v Mustardy. On one tune it sounds like Dave Gilmore shows up doing an absurd guitar solo(?). Give me a few more listens and we'll see how it all pans out for me and Tinashe.
Rome Fortune's back. He has the best album/mixtape covers in the game and this cover is probably his best so far. I'm totally lovin that beard too. For this mixtape he takes an opposite approach to his previous tape Beautiful Pimp 2 where he used only one producer, Cito, for it's entire 11 trax. On Small World he's got every man and his dog on production duties including Fout Tet(?). It's a testament to Rome's vision that this all hangs together so well and might even be as good as Beautiful Pimp II. A metal riff shows up on one tune and strangely doesn't seem that out of place. The pace has picked up a notch or two on this tape. There's even a song, ie. with singing not just rapping, on Small World. Rome Fortune is Atlanta's most intergalactically smooth dude, still doin his own thing, you know, haunted, intimate and whispered raps combined with trippy future hip hop.
*Haven't checked out the new ones for Gunplay, Lil B, Rich Gang, Key! & FKI, The Church or Billy Idol yet. They all came at once!