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Freddie Gibbs: Hip Hops Last Hope?

I fun at music critics all the time but there are some real good ones out there and Sasha Frere-Jones  of The NewYorker. I’m a subscriber and I eat up his writing with a fork and spoon. In the surrent issue it was Sasha who introduced me to Sleigh Bells and in the same issue he had a state of the art overview of hip hop, “Wrapping Up”.

I didn’t dislike the article but I thought it was a little… reactionary. If I was the writer I’d have concentrated less on Jay-Z and more on 1) the hybrid hip-hop/dance rhythms that are changing the face and energizing hip hop. 2) the art of the remix 3) he might not like pop-hop but to ignore Pitbull, Flo Rida, Trey Songz, is to ignore where the ssales are coming from that. 4)  I dont get the complaints about Kid Cudi -I think he is as good as he thinks he is and “The Pursuit Of Happiness” Benny benassi remix is one of the songs of the year.

Having said ALL THAT, if  Frere-Jones tells me to check out  rapper aFreddie Gibbss the one rapper he’d put money on you better believe I’m checking out Freddie Gibbs, even if Frere-Jones is under the impression Raekwon has anything left to sa.
Gibbs is a former drug pusher from the horrendous ghetto Gary, Indiana, who was signed to Interscope, went to LA to record some tracks, worked day and night, got dropped when his Interscope mentor was fired from the label.
Gibbs has been self-releasing mix tapes and I bought five songs (all that were available)  directly from him on  his myspace page: http://www.myspace.com/freddiegibbs. The songs appear to be Gibbs idea of the best of his material and it is impressive enough to warrant a shout out in a big ass national publication.

“Summa Dis” off Gibbs new mixtape MIDWESTGANGSTABOXFRAMECADILLACMUZIK is excellent -the rhyming smart and cool, the beats addictive and the other hook “we keep rolling” a self-evident truth. Gibbs is all about the flow and it is because of the flow (and not the beats, which Frere-Jones notes as being original) that makes Gibbs something above the normal.

“F.R.E.D.D.I.E.” off Flood The Hood sounds more like a nightmare in Gary Indiana than an anything human. It is another criminal at work story though there doesn’t appear to be any bling floating about the neigborhood. “Everyone knows I be pimpink ho’s” Gibbs claims and it isn’t very romantic. Perhaps that is what he does best here, like early Biggie, he seems to be telling it straight. And while he trips on his ego, he doesn’t fall.

“Talkin’ ABout You” shows he can use a sample as well as anybody and there is a very strong ready for prime sound to him. But he is in his own way as depressive as Cudi: it is soul but a repressed id flow waiting to break through.

Put money on  Freddie Gibbs?  Perhaps but I’d need  pretty damn good odds.

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