The Rap-Up: Week of April 6, 2020

The Rap-Up returns with new bangers from Fat Meech, Cousin Stizz, and of course, the "Ion Rap Beef" remix.
By    April 6, 2020

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Mano Sundaresan‘s wrestler entrance music would be “Throw Some D’s.”

Fat Meech – “Dirty Scale”

Joy is something we all need right now, and no one brings it quite like Fat Meech. A South Central comedian, YouTuber, Instagram personality, and, above all, rapper with God-given vocal chops, Meech is mathematically destined for some iteration of success. But beyond marketability and a “national buzz,” he seems like a genuinely good person. A person who cares about his city and the people in it, who speaks earnestly to his community about staying indoors, who went live on IG last week to perform his two biggest hits, “Brothers” and “Brothers 2” and inject some optimism into people’s lives. 

Fat Meech’s new single “Dirty Scale” is topically a hustler’s anthem that carries dark themes, but he pulls it off with an effervescence that immediately makes the whole thing brighter. Really a soul singer with an MC’s sensibilities, Meech might initially come off as a West Coast Rod Wave, but how he writes and performs is more in line with 03 Greedo or Boosie. He layers and harmonizes under his voice, which often sits distantly in the mix in the way that Greedo’s does on “Mafia Business.” That gives “Dirty Scale” and Meech’s other songs the vibrant feel of a live group performance on a block somewhere. He’s a beacon of radiance in a sea of beige.

Drakeo the Ruler, 03 Greedo, & Earl Sweatshirt – “Ion Rap Beef (Remix)”

The platonic ideal of a POW song. Earl spazzed.

Cousin Stizz – “Vendetta”

Some things in Boston will never change. Sports will continue to dominate, traffic will continue to suck, and Cousin Stizz will continue to make good music. Now five years into his career, he’s settled into a Curren$y-like mode of low-stakes, high-quality consistency. Blessed with a cool, musical voice and a talented crop of Boston-bred producers like LDG and Tee-Watt who may actually be the biggest hip-hop stars out of the city one day, he’s reached the point where he can’t put out a bad song.

“VENDETTA” continues his incendiary streak. Stizz, LDG, and Park Ave connect for a wavy ride in an Aventador through the city and beyond. It sounds like it was recorded in five minutes but demands an endless loop.

G Fredo – “This My City”

Ever since Boston’s G Fredo and 7981 Kal dropped “Dead Opps Pt. 2” in the summer of 2017, their H$M crew has had a stranglehold on the city’s street rap scene. Their raps document the paranoia that seeps through Boston’s Dorchester neighborhood, which bears a streak of violence, both internally and state-administered. A reality that is often lost on outsiders who only see racist white people and Good Will Hunting. G Fredo writes songs that are lengthy sneers, dotting them with kernels of grief and aspiration. In the video for “This My City,” he’s so commanding that you forget that Dudley Park is deserted.

Valee – “Jaywalking”

Every few months, Valee casually invents a new flow. What he’s doing with every bite-sized release is what prestige artists take years to do with their albums. On “Jaywalking,” every line patters steadily, then spins out, like a car swerving on an empty road. Like clockwork, these permutations come to Valee and then bleed into the rap lexicon. 

I’m including the Barber tweet because he really dropped the whole song on the TL like a snippet.

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