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Faster than you can say Creator, the Tyler – here’s the next one they’ve pulled the panties and pedestals out for.
Hype justified yet? Too old for this shit and lived through more rappers than you can shake a Papoose at, so no. Is he worth listening to however? Definitely. After enjoying ‘Peso’ a few months back, it’s brain-fried charm had me curious and I was genuinely looking forward to hearing more.
East Coast was once a behemoth yet recently it’s been but a piss-ant in the commersh rap game (bar Minaj, but her growing ambiguity is making it hard to count her). Perhaps Harlem’s ASAP Rocky is their offering to the post-Noughties arena that swells with it’s Lil’ Bs and Wiz Khalifa’s and seems to have Weezy as it’s architect for eccentricity (don’t front) – even though this tape is more trap house than it is group home. Then again, it’s 2011 and the notion of regionalism is, but archaic, dead.
Everything is purple? Check. Swag, swag, swag? Check. Intensive botanical enthusiasm? Check. Topically he doesn’t slur too far away from current status quo, but much like OFWGKTA, A$AP and his crew (yes, as standard he comes one with too), appear to be building their own little devil-may-care macrocosm. Hence I suspect it’ll appeal to middle class brats in addition to well-dressed thugs.
With dark clouds of mood-orientated din spearheaded by Clams Casino (who’s developed a noticeable following this year), and a bunch of dope in-house cats on the same skewered wavelength, production on the tape is hitting me harder than A$AP himself at times. The leaky lo-fi low ends, warped overlays, tonnes of pitched down candy paint hooks. It’s so smoked out, I’m reminded of Curren$y and Khalifa’s collabo tapes from a couple years back. In which case, it’s still nothing really revolutionary, but a highly entertaining accompaniment to your late-evening cheeba sessions. Note however tracks like ‘Keep It G’ where his flow shows those glimmers of rotten Apple infectiousness. The charisma is definitely there, the melodic flow, that same magnetism on display in the ‘Peso’ video, but the overall content of LiveLoveASAP needs to display more individualistic grit. Lyrically I want A$AP to take us deeper into the warped media-circus of his imagination; here you can tell he’s yet tip-toe’ing the tightrope. Still, the kid has something and combined with it’s swag-in-time-for-Winter backdrop, I’m sure it’ll simmer slowly into the psyche over the next few weeks.
To amplify hype, Sony/RCA have just thrown some Fiddy money at the kid (3 mill contract to be precise), but ultimately proof of life will be in the follow-ups and how they sustain the buzz.
Keep it real dunny.