Harley Geffner knows beef is when they up the fee to hit your muscle tee.
Bandhunta Izzy – “How to Rob”
Rap beefs and disses have always been more performative than authentic expressions of disgust for one another, but in the Twitter and IG live era of promotion, they’ve only further blurred the lines of reality. Were Trippie Redd and Famous Dex actually arguing? What about Rich The Kid and Uzi? Who the hell knows. I’m not even sure if I made those beefs up or not. But there isn’t much legitimate pushback to be expected from big diss songs nowadays. 6ix9ine pushed the bounds of how reckless you can be for social media, trying to start shit with Keef, who at this point has no interest in fooling around with stuff like that and messing up his money. But if you’re clearly just fucking around and looking for publicity by throwing random shots, you’re probably not putting yourself in too much real life danger. It’s made the content feel less biting since it contextually has lower stakes (neither Pusha nor Drake ACTUALLY had anything on the line, come on now), but the freedom to throw even more and wilder shots will probably lead to a boom of comedy rap roasts in 6ix9ine’s wake.
Baltimore’s Bandhunta Izzy is uninhibited in calling out pretty much every rapper in the game on “How to Rob.” It’s the most fun diss song since Kendrick’s “Control” verse lit the game on fire . If I’m being honest, “How to Rob” also bangs way harder than “Control” (inevitably because it’s genesis traces back to 50). He doesn’t have enough time or mental energy to bother with more than a single-line barb for each artist. Izzy plans on jacking Yung Nudy for his hellcat, running up on Gunna, “what’s in that Chanel bag?”, knocking Lil Wayne off his skateboard, taking Nicki’s implants, and running up on Lil Nas “cuz he might like that.” Some are not even legitimate barbs and just little asides like “I was gon rob Lil Uzi with a big pump, I was gon rob Lil Pump with a big Uzi.” There are two notable exclusions from his hit list though. He knows better than to disrespect the legends of Keef or Thug.
Now some beef obviously has higher stakes, when people are throwing shots at different sets in local communities, and some of those threats lead to real violence. That’s mostly out of view of the public eye though. It’s also why it feels like everyone is so fascinated by this 6ix9ine case as an outlet for the fetishization of the pornographic details of gang life.
Yung Goon & Dodie Jesus [Dodie Boyz] + Kidd Kaelan – “Ain’t No Thang”
I don’t know anything about the Dodie Boyz or Kidd Kaelan, but the Insomnia Music Group YouTube channel reliably spits out hot neo LA bump. These dudes are kind of the first Shoreline copycats I know of, with their cool, tempered bounce. The autotune hook is sing-songy enough to get stuck in your head and the first dude’s verse without the video could actually have me mistake him for Ogheesy.
BREADWINNA GDAWG + Rico Cartel – “RICO Act”
@Zarathak23 reminded me on Twitter that we have to soak up all the good Florida rap while we can still feel the leftover strands of summer. Enjoy the last licks.
Sada Baby – “Bloxk Day”
It’s insane that Sada Baby has me wanting to listen to another song that samples that horn pattern from C-Murder’s “4 My N*****.” It’s so played out, but it’s often in those spaces that really talented artists can distinguish themselves. Sada isn’t doing anything crazy here though, but he takes the tired tune and spices it up with some signature balancing-act flows and comedic wordplay, boasting that his girl calls his dick “scrumptiadilius” and that he’ll knock his enemy over the median in traffic. It’s also not even the best song on his new Whoop tape, that title belongs to Bolumbus Day, but Facebook told us video is king.
Famous Dex – “How You Gone Do It”
Producer Captain Crunch said in a tweet I can’t find anymore that you can tell that some LA girls, just by looking at them, have done unspeakable things at Famous Dex’s house. Makes sense given all his IG lives where he’s promoting “girls-only” parties, dm for address. He’s more a rap scene comedian and caricature of himself at this point than a rising artist whose music people anticipate. He hit his musical ceiling a while ago, and never really seemed to care. He was real zombied off the drugs for a while too, so that didn’t help. Then he tried to be cool and artsy and experimental hanging with Rocky, which made both of them worse. But now he’s back in his sweet spot, with this carefree attitude, silly dances, and uh huhs that take up half the song. His newer stuff is not changing the game by any means, but it’s a better look than whatever else has been happening with him the last 4 years or so. And it’s just plain, simple fun.
Haiti Babii x DaBoii + D-Lo + ALLBLACK – “Big Mad”
This is a beautifully modern Oakland cut. Haiti Babii, whose crazy onomatopoeic freestyle went viral a few months ago, is more than just a weird Thug child meme. He leads the way through a fun looking night, pumping out nasty one-liners before his verse is jumped in to with “this bitch name Cheyenne, she like Haiti save me,” to which he boomerangs it back with “got this bitch name Michelle, she like Haiti save me.” I don’t think I’ve ever heard a bad or even phoned in DaBoii verse, and it’s no different on Big Mad. I just wish All Black was there for the video shoot. And if you’re expecting a heavy beat drop like apparently everyone in the YouTube comments was, don’t. It’s still knocking.