Recently, I’ve received some pointed criticism that I don’t write enough about Hip-Hop. Frankly, the criticism was right. In fact, I can’t remember the last time I did. Hip Hop has had brief moments in the years since its East vs. West Gangsta Rap apex, but too few to mention.
With rappers like Soulja Boy setting the conventional standard for what the hip hop world has come to there really hasn’t been much to write about. There was a time that the state of Hip-Hop today would be enough to put a fork in it. That’d be a bit hasty though. You’d be discounting the contribution of Freddie Gibbs, Hip-Hop’s emerging superstar.
If Tupac, Nas & Krazy Bone had a kid it’d be Freddie Gibbs & would be pretty extraordinary. Freddie Gibbs has been underground for years, but with his new release Str8 Killa (May not be the best name) he is about to change that. Gibbs new release is bringing gangster rap back to the masses. It hearkens back to a day when Tupac would rap with an ease & eloquence that nearly made him too smart for hip-hop.
Freddie Gibbs follows in those steps & doesn’t fall into the frills that many rappers have fallen into, looking at you Snoop. The beats & music Gibbs uses surpasses any thing going on right now in Hip-Hop at all. Nothing has changed about the misogyny or murderous prophesies & to some that may seem troubling. Not to me. As a person of sound mind & reasonable character I can differentiate between talentless garbage like say Jason Mraz & intelligent albeit sometimes incendiary Freddie Gibbs.
It isn’t for everyone. It’s like The Neverending Story when Sebastian goes into the bookstore & the old man says the book isn’t for everyone. It’s the same thing with Freddie & that’s a good thing. Kanye West is called a genius on a regular basis & Jamie Foxx is recording music. This is how bad music has become, that the guy who used to dress up like Wanda is a successful musician with so little talent that it boggles the mind.
Gibbs will alternately rap like he’s throwing it back to the Bone Thugs & Harmony days, then slow it down like Tupac or Biggie used to when they wanted to put on that Barry White touch for the ladies. The album isn’t perfect, but it’s certainly better than anything Snoop or Dre have done in the past decade. Rap has been wondering, much like Simon & Garfunkel did many years ago, where their Joe Di maggio had gone. It looks like their wait might be over & will come in the form of Freddie Gibbs, The Savior of Hip-Hop.
Personal OG – Freddie Gibbs
Live By The Game – Freddie Gibbs