It’s been so long since any new hip-hop blipped my radar.
I’ve always hated rap, preferring independent hip-hop, particularly the dusty crate-digging style that eschews that “get money, get hos” philosophy for something a little more noble.
So I should hate Schoolboy Q with all his sex, drugs and gang-banging shtick. But man, his flow is so mesmerising and the beats so innovative and downright and irrepressibly bumpalicious that I am hooked.
Have a listen and make up your own mind but for me, there are a couple of key elements that paint this shit gold.
- The upper register piano loop. It’s quite mournful to start with but the slight glitches in the sample, knock it even further off kilter. It’s a brilliant counterpoint to the lyrical content and the more, ahem, “jiggy” elements.
- The whole track has a chopped and screwed feel but the bassline, oh that bassline. It is quite possibly the most druggy b-line of all time.
- Q’s flow. Forget monotone rap. It speeds up to almost hysterical pitch then slows right down. There are little vocal tics and slurred words. He subtly stutters syllables for emphasis and percussive effect. This is supported by the production, which cleverly pans his vocals around the sound field, so it can sound like he is dancing around you.
It’s ridiculously filthy, granted, but absurdly catchy. I can’t get it out of my head: “Got my daughter swagging like her motherfucking Daddy-o“.