The Jaguar Journal

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The Jaguar Journal

The Jaguar Journal

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Chief Keef

Chief+Keef

Despite being one of the founding fathers of the drill genre, Chief Keef is still one of the key figures pushing boundaries within its space nearly a decade since the first wave of its popularity in Chicago. Almighty so 2 is an important landmark within the current landscape of rap and marks a shift towards the acceptance for more awkward 808 rhythms and a revival in the public’s trust of Sosa’s production after the truly beautiful dumpster fire that was “Back From The Dead 2” (where he sounded like a goblin rapping over literal medieval tavern type beats). The album is entirely produced by Chief Keef himself and it really shows, but in a good way.  

 

Although it’s both likely and also a bit of a stretch, the production seems to take inspiration from the Ghetto House subgenre Juke or atleast is somehow indirectly reminiscent of it, as it used to be exceedingly popular in the area Chief Keef is based before drill started taking over. The insane snare fills and syncopated 808 programming that is heard throughout the album is something pretty innovative in the genre whether it’s an intentional callback to a (relatively) obscure chicago house genre or a product of the offputting, maladroit production style Keef has. If you want a straight-cut example of this you should take a listen to the track “Jesus” (and the interlude before it because it’s so damn funny please do that it’s essential). Even though the production of the album is unique throughout the album this track is really something that only Chief Keef could pull off. Combined with the lyrics that somehow manage to reference Ratchet and Clank, the Flintstones and Optimus Prime in a song that’s about calling out culture-vultures within hip-hop, it’s a comical masterpiece of drill that represents what the genre stands for as a whole whilst being something fresh. It’s definitely the best track on the album, if you choose one track to listen to it should be this one. 

Now despite it being something pretty fresh with the production it still doesn’t manage to escape some of the common pitfalls of the drill genre. Chief Keef’s lyricism isn’t really anything special. Not that I really expected him to be the next Kendrick Lamar, but come on, be at least a bit creative when talking about the several hellcats you have. It’s pretty much any boastful rapper’s lyrics with a tinge of the presumed aspergers he has without any of the creativity. That being said though, if you sift through the good amount of the slop within its lyricism, you can still find many standout bars and the interlude is absolutely amazing. Another downside of the album is if you’re listening to it in one go it can also get a bit repetitive. More than an hour for a drill album can be pretty monotonous and it would benefit from some songs being cut down. It’s definitely not a concept album and nobody’s forcing you to listen in order.

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About the Contributor
Nikolay Kulagin
Nikolay Kulagin, Reporter
Nikolay Kulagin Staff Writer Nikolay is like a bright eyed new kid whose spirit the editors need to crush.  
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