August 30, 2012

Tosten Burks is weird.

It’s about time drill rap got weird. Just when you thought the Chicago bubble was getting boring, here’s an artist indulging in the sound of the moment and equally bored with it. Hence, the banging, queasy paranoia that is Jaye’s “Gods.”

Daniel Worthy’s high hats are less sure of themselves, skittering in and out of dark alleys not with brute anger but fear. The central sample is basically just an alarm going off for five minutes. Jaye revels in this anxiety, allows it to shove him into the dark crevices of his imagination.

The result is a more honest response to Chicago’s horrors than any decree by the Chief. Jaye hangs around with goons and has a closet full of ghosts, unafraid to admit that he’s not just maddened by a city of 13 homicides in 30 minutes, but also haunted by it. The town’s Young Chop-lead trap scene is riveting because it leans towards the ominous; here, Jaye dives headfirst into it.

Of course, this is still drill, packed with hedonism by definition. Yes, Jaye means to boast. He does so memorably by aiming so high and off-center. The gods he evokes skew more mythological then white pearly gates. This is the music Hades would bump strutting around Hyde Park. It makes sense then that Ab-Soul shows up, the king of hallucinatory hood rap, keeping things relatively low-brow, just flipping birds and flipping tons. It’s nice to hear him without such high stakes.

Jaye’s first full-length, Fiat Lvx, is coming Friday. If the whole project is this searing, it’s worth a look. The bubble hasn’t burst yet.

MP3: Jaye ft. Ab-Soul – “Gods” (Left-Click)

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