Sunday, March 20, 2011

Comments on "My Little Grimey N*gga"

If you don't know already, E-40 is experiencing a kind of second (third?) coming these days, getting ready to release another two albums at the end of this month. This song has recently been all over the internet and for good reason.

If you read this blog you know I have a little hang-up with musical masturbation, which often makes it hard for me to like rappers that are famous for their technique, like Eminem, Twista, Busta Rhymes etc. E-40 is in the fast, technique-heavy category in a serious way, shoving extra syllables and seemingly awkward flows into practically every bar, but I do not find it hard to enjoy his music. It seems that 40 really understands that he's using his voice as an instrument. While it might seem like he's showing off sometimes, I would say that ninety percent of the time his expressions of pure technique are done in the service of a particular style. This track in particular is a perfect place for him to go off, with a minimal, slow-tempo beat and a terrifically laconic, mind-cleansing chorus from Stressmatic. 40's voice can really act as a counterpoint, can really create the song in the verses, with lines like "syrup and cha-cha sniffin'" and the deliciously pitched up "everybody knew his name". As much as I like chaotic, off-kilter production, I like chaotic, off-kilter rapping like this just as much, as long as its in the place where it has the space to work its magic.

And if that isn't enough, this is one of the best works of rap storytelling I've heard in a while. Solid work.

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