Are you a ho? Are you sufficiently scared?
This one came to me in a combination of odd ways. I’ve been a big Danny Brown fan since I heard him on RTJ3. Went back into the back catalogue and I have been a fan since.
JPEGMAFIA is one of those artists I have just missed out on. I have heard occasional tracks, but nothing has hooked me yet. Nothing against Peggy’s work, I just hadn’t been pulled in yet.
But, in a case of judging the book by its cover, what got me over the hump was the announcement of the the track list. How the fuck could I not listen to an album with tracks like Fentanyl Tester and Jack Harlow Combo Meal.
Sometimes with records, you got to be in the right mindset. The right place. The right time…for it to REALLLY sink in. Well congrats Danny and Peggy. You did it.
I was drunk as shit the first time I heard it, and it was exactly what I needed when I needed it.
First, lets talk the big obvious thing. The production. I will freely admit I have not been a fan of the new generation’s production style. This sort of ultracompressed, high distortion, ultimate lo-fi style. This kind of hyperpop style does not appeal to me. For example, I have tried to get into 100gecs but I just can’t there. And I am the biggest fan of MSI and The Left Rights you will find.
But this album. Peggy’s managed to do it. I think cause melody remains at the center. They beat construction and…musicality of the thing really shines through. It takes talent to craft something this unhinged but still pretty.
And god DAMN the rapsmanship. The fucking bars. They have the bars. Peggy calls himself both the black AOC and MTG. Danny going for the throat harassing people still being fans of known chicken salesmen. Top of their game style stuff on this record.
The closest thing I can compare this album to is Andrew W.K.’s I Get Wet. Not in terms of genre or style, but in terms of energy. For as avant-garde as the music is, it really is a high energy insanity party album. They are out here to make a record for that rough night when you know you living wrong. This is some dirtbag shit with a smattering of repentance.
So, if you fastforwarded to the end, you notice it is not a perfect score…this sort of project really tests the limit of the points system. I want to give this album a perfect but, its one of these things of the album not knowing its own strength. Sometimes the production…the striving for that hard compression really drowns them both out. It takes multiple listens to get it all (which this album definitely rewards).
But I feel like…it could have used like one more week to cook just to get those vocals tweaked a little. It can’t sound clean. Danny even said “the shit is not supposed to be mixed like a fucking J Cole album,” so I totally get it. But, just…if there is a vol 2 (and I pray to Jesus there is), just tweak the vocals a tad and you will be in masterpiece country.
Overall, we got something real special here. A rare artifact of fucking big flava, ass kicking shit. Next time you get fucked up or feel like fucking something up, give it a listen. You won’t regret it.
3.5/4 – An album for the chronically online. Put it on, and let’s party.