Monday 11 February 2013

#MixtapeMonday - Joey Bada$$: 1999

Lyrics & Delivery: 4.8/ 5.0
Production: 4.6/5.0
Overall Score: 4.7/5.0

Review by MrReesh - Send me messages and discover the power of friendship via Twitter- @MrReesh

Hype does funny things to people. It makes them listen to crappy music and respond with monosyllabic adjectives such as "dope" and "ill", which they used to only declare on monochromatic pictures reblogged on their avant-garde-esque deep-esque I'm so mysterious-esque Tumblrs. It makes them engage in pointless arguments they're unable to see the truth in due to the weight of fanboy-itude on their eyelids. And it makes people really easy to piss off when they’re all excited about the song and you say "NAH I AIN'T HEARD IT BRO".
But one of the most justified hype houses I've come across recently has to be Joey Bada$$ of the PRO(gressive) ERA collective and his debut mixtape, 1999.

Sheep and a poem. Now that's FRIGGIN DOPE.

From track one Joey goes in, though to me it's from track 2, Waves, that your mouth fully starts catching flies as you just sit in awe of how he manages to string rhymes together in a flow deliciously reminiscent of early nineties hip hop. He generally maintains this standard throughout the mixtape (bar a couple songs you generally, to be frank, don't care about), covering a range of different topics and in different styles that really show off his versatility as an artist. Seriously, after a few tracks you stop and think "what the hell is this?" but not what the hell is this like someone posted a sea bass in your letterbox, it’s more like “OMG it’s raining money! What the hell is this!”. As you listen it's surprising how good 1999 sounds at first, and after a few listens you're well and truly hooked.
Sea bass... GEDDIT
And it's not just Joey either, the features by his fellow PRO ERA members range from solid to impressive. On one of the best tracks of the mixtape Survival Tactics, the late Capital STEEZ even manages to outshine Joey Bad with a fiery verse that thunderously compliments his venomous delivery. Other members Chuck Strangers, Kirk Knight, CJ Fly and Apex also provide respectable verses and choruses which help to concrete the mixtape as a satisfyingly superb listen. And I'll ignore Chuck Strangers 2chainz-esque scrrrt outburst in FromdaTomb because although it invokes a sea bass level what the hell it’s a one off and doesn’t really affect the song.

Like I mentioned there are a couple tunes that you listen through and not really pay attention to, which for me were Suspect, Daily Routine and Where It At, despite a catchy chorus. I mean they're decent songs, but it's like the other tunes GO HARD and those ones are just... not soft. And plus with songs like Waves, Pennyroyal and Hardknock you feel as though you're a busy bandana donning woman from the hood who honestly, aint got no time fo' dat.

1999 is like a fight between an angry Jack Bauer on Red Bull and E and Optimus Prime who fused with Gogeta, but with both of them having 80s mullets - AWESOME, but not altogether perfect. Download it. Even if you don't have eardrums, download it. Make it work. Nike that ting homie, just do it. Anyone who's even remotely into rap, especially if you're a bigger fan of pseudo old-school mid-nineties flows should at least give it a shot - it's definitely worth the 88.5mb on your computer machine device thingy that you have. 

Joey Bad on Twitter: @joeyBADASS_

My Top 3:
1) Waves
2) Survival Tactics
3) Pennyroyal

You can download and listen to 1999 via the DatPiff player below:

Photo Credits:
Original Sea Picture "Sea Turtle 1" by deeje
Original Bass Picture "Rob Allen Solid 4 Electric Bass Guitar" by Ethan Prater

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