The Pharaoh with the 40 Water co-sign finally drops his EP, so that you can ball like baby until you can’t use gold terlets anymore due to the cold. “Big Tymin” has become a minor radio smash in LA, unsurprising considering the Bay and LA are forever bound despite the frequent animosity. But Nef makes the link clear with the Snoop Dogg samples and remix with Y.G. and Ty Dolla Sign.
The influences are obvious. He sounds like one of the Hot Boys if they came out in 2015, influenced by HBK, hyphy, and the sages over at Sick Wid’ It. There’s a tribute to Michael Jackson, complete with an auto-tune interlude that sounds like it came straight from Atlanta. If 2015 is post-regional, you could make the case for Nef. But that’s the wrong interpretation.
The Bay and LA and the South have been borrowing from each other since the days of Celly Cel and Jermaine Dupri. This is very much Vallejo, down to the flow, the refusal to compromise, the desire to build fame locally first and fuck the rest. He might use Snoop’s voice but it’s for a song called “Mobbin.” He might remake “Ha” on “Meantime,” but he’s a “707 savage” shouting all the “bad bitches from Sactown all the way back down.” Or as he said on last year’s best song: “Bitch, I’m From Vallejo.” The city of the burners.
Rap is rarely this effortless. The sort of thing you could listen to every Tuesday and Thursday, for the indefinite future.