For those that don’t know or don’t remember, Nappy Roots is a Hip Hop group consisting of members Skinny Deville, B. Still, Ron Clutch, & Fish Scales, that was founded in the late 90’s at Western Kentucky University where all members attended. At some point Atlantic picked them up and in 2002 Watermelon, Chicken & Gritz was a commercial smash hit, hosting a number of singles that made a significant imprint in the game.
Yet as is often the case in the rap game, they were hot a few summers and then disappeared from the scene altogether, going independent and subsequently abandoned by the same pop culture that once embraced them to the fullest [although it should be noted that they continued to work with Anthony Hamilton and that was always good music] - yet here they are in 2017 back together like they never left
Another 40 Akerz is critiqued track by track below, and it’s definitely filled with some moments.
Superstar ft Ashley Rose
“So many murders be unsolved, including the ones the police done, we in the news more than movie stars, guess that makes us superstars” The first record off the tape is a good one, good content good lyrics and good overall execution, even the hard hitting chorus provided by singer Ashley Rose that definitely stands out and delivers the message.
“Playing 2K and I’m a fool with it, riding on that with the roof missing” All the verses are tough yet the star is the piano instrumental, that piano instrumental is 🔥🔥🔥 along with the hook, bridge, and general theme. Not fuck-up-your-rewind-button worthy but all of it is well delivered with substance.
Take A Deep Breath ft Micah Freeman & FortBowie
“You should try to meditate or pray, before you take another man’s time away, I was just 16 and turned felon, that’s common down where I’m from, young blacks getting labeled early, still fucked up in our late thirties…” Nappy Roots & company spits 💎💎💎 over another jazzy instrumental that’s right on time. Add this to the playlists immediately this is one of the standouts on the record.
Parking Lots ft Aleon Craft
“We got the parking lot looking like a concert” yea… not feeling this… you can skip this
The Void ft EARTHGANG & Scotty ATL
“I be on drugs all the time son…” On this one Dreamville affiliates EARTHGANG are featured and it’s definitely on point. A solid album cut in every way 💯
Peephole ft Jarren Benton
“Then I got a scholarship, ran to Kentucky playing ball and shit” Decent album cut nothing more nothing less, although in comparison to the previous track it’s not quite as significant.
I Tried ft Gareth Asher
“All Afghanistan, ain’t Taliban, all blacks ain’t thugs, and all Crips don’t hate Bloods” Strong lyrics but I can do without the country singer in the hook, it wasn’t terrible execution but I personally wouldn’t play it on any occasion, which again is unfortunate considering the verses were solid
Front Porch ft Madison Laughridge
“I’m just sitting on the front porch chillin” yea… SKIP!
Wings ft Emi Meyer
“You got to fly lil homie, get away fast, it ain’t safe here, dreams decay here, go to a fancy university and stay there, get in your fast car and drive like you hate here, to stay alive and on your feet you’ll see better days, after your journey come back home the love never fades, stay out of trouble, best you can make your folks the proudest, travel the world and tell me all about it…” The lyrics in this record alone are definitely worthy of recognition and praise, and the featured singer/songwriter Emi Meyer compliments the record perfectly and is now officially on my radar. This is a great record that got the video treatment… with all members of Nappy Roots noticeably absent… kinda disappointing considering there were strong contributions from everyone.
Gr8teful ft Prisca
“Thank god that I’m willing and able, capable to put food on the table, win more than I lose how my days go” Solid album cut… not mad at this
I Don’t Care ft Curtis Fields
“Woke up feeling great today, and you can hate it, but I don’t care…” One of the best hooks on the album and overall another solid album cut, and so far that’s one of many for anyone who's counting.
Yelp ft ForteBowie
“I voted hoping for some change it’s the damn same” I don’t care for the hook at all, thus despite a decent first verse I’ll pass on this
It Ain’t Far
“Tour the city like it’s 4 in the evening, it’s 4 am and we ain’t thinkin bout sleepin” Decent and not trash but it doesn’t really add to the project, and one too many Uber references if you ask me
“Stash that in my snap back, grass hat pass that, we beating up the concrete pavement” Nice outro record and decent closure although not exactly flameworthy.
Overall this project was better than expected, as it had been a long time since Nappy Roots came on the scene and faded away (in terms of commercial appeal), and while this record like it’s predecessors has only hope to achieve critical acclaim, by and large it’s clear they’ve truly earned it. As is almost always the case the project is probably five records too long, yet songs like ‘Take A Deep Breath,’ ‘Looking Grown,’ ‘The Void,’ ‘I Don’t Care,’ and ‘Wings’ are definitely some of the best Hip Hop to come out this year.