Friday, April 16, 2010

Blogging WorldStar/Onsmash

My interest being piqued by the appearance of videos from JR Writer and J Hood, at one time two of my favorite up and coming rappers, on the same day, I decided I would take a break from studying Property and listen, though I know better, and see if they have anything left in the tank. I also am making the questionable decision to listen to a new Sauce Money song. We will see how that goes.

As you may recall, JR Writer, AKA the Writer of Writers, was the young tyke who memorably rapped Cam to a draw on the first track of Diplomatic Immunity 2. He also made some pretty great mixtapes, took nonsensical internal rhymes and multis to a whole new level, and reached some kind of apotheosis of the Dipset aesthetic when he rapped in baby talk on 'If Only You Believe' to describe the experience of fatherhood:

It's a miracle from seein' the birth next

To seein' the burp (yes!), first words, even the first steps
Goo-goo ga-ga, hoo-hoo ha-ha
peek-a-boo, I see you, you-who papa...

Subsequently, however, the Writer of Writers' writing got kind of sloppy and he put out a number of albums on Koch, all of which sucked. Or at least I think so having only heard the first. Anyway, now JR is 'Back At It'... and the results are very discouraging. His trademark squeaky voice seems to have disappeared with puberty, his flow is no longer so eccentric, I didn't hear a single funny punchline, and ironically and rather sadly he boasts that "I can do hooks/while your whole tape sounds like a Dr. Seuss book." Still more sadly, he rhymes

I've been a great, how can yall pricks relate
What yall know about Hot 9, 9 minutes straight?
Been a while, but there's a time and a place
My timing is great, I define what it takes

Ah, the tragedy of the has-been NY mixtape rapper. Speaking of has-been NY mixtape rappers...

J Hood also once had quite a bit of promise, what with his quirkily grimey inflection and way with a punchline. He also had a tiny little head and a face like a mosquito. This added to his gulliness. Then J/Jae got himself in trouble with his big D-Block brothers and they decided to end his career and not let him out of his deal. Only a short while after Jada had that shit fit on the radio about how he might toss a stainless steel refrigerator off a skyscraper and kill Diddy with it because Diddy wasn't giving him his publishing. Oh well. Anyway, poverty seems to be bad for J's rapping. I guess this is what six years ago we used to call a "club song." Back when Joe Budden was so confused about how to make one that he actually called a song "Club Song." Six models in this video and only one is borderline doable. The same is probably true of the women at any club that would play this song. That's about all I can say about it.

Talk about unfulfilled promise. The Sauce Money of 'Bring It On' could've made a pretty terrific album. [Excerpt from a puff piece on his debut from the time: "Fiercely determined, Sauce never gave up on his dream and the result is the multi-layered Middle Finger U. on Priority Records, which will undoubtedly take its place alongside other monumental debuts like Jay-Z's Reasonable Doubt, Nas' Illmatic and DMX's It's Dark and Hell is Hot.
"] As we know, that didn't occur. Instead he made a bad album and wrote 'I'll Be Missing You,' which isn't really an achievement to his credit but did, I imagine, allow him to live a comfortable lifestyle. Today, Sauce Money is simply very fat, so much so that he sounds an awful lot like Fat Joe. I guess when you blow up your voice goes through changes. Appropriately he's accompanied in this video by a plus-size model. She licks his sideburns at one point. That's sort of gross. The production would've been okay in 1998. The rapping would've been a little more than okay around the same time. You can still tell he has talent though. At one point he says, "if I want it, kings I unseat 'em and rains/reigns become a slight drizzle." Which isn't that good or anything, but hey, his mind is still working. The track is also happily free of pathetic references to the days when he was quasi-important.

Apparently Styles has an album coming out May 18th? I like how all Styles songs begin with conversations between himself and his engineer, Poobs. I also like how Styles never evolves as a rapper at all, technically, thematically, whatever. He's still the same guy with the same eight ad-libs ("uh-uh!"), same elementary yet unorthodox flow, same concerns, etc. Unfortunately Styles has a weakness for shitty piano beats and lachrymose hooks sung by bad singers, and the verses are very by the numbers Styles. Why don't I leave the hood, why don't I leave the corner, rusty blades, D-BLOCK, uh-uh, etc. etc. And this is the first single. Oh well, it'll have 6 good songs and he'll keep making great mixtapes.

I decided to listen to this song from Soulja Boy and Arab just so I could have the unique experience of sitting through Arab's verse thinking, "oh shit, it's coming, a halfway-okay rapper is about to go in, he's going in, he's coming... Soulja!" You know, the way you might listen to a Juelz song in 2003 waiting for Cam to come in and just destroy everything. Well, Soulja certainly does not disappoint... in entertainment value, anyway. I hear a Gucci Mane imitation in here, a weird Master P/Silkk imitation, a Lil B imitation of course, an attempt to rap like he's from Africa, and a claim that he's more "froze than a frozer, I missed the fucking freezer." And that's all in one verse. Arab then says he goes hard like a boulder and gives a shout-out to a guy who's "his dog, just like Milo." And Otis! I believe that movie came out before he was even born.

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