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Big Moochie Grape - East Haiti Baby Music Album Reviews

Big Moochie Grape - East Haiti Baby Music Album Reviews
Steeped in the Memphis underground tradition, the Young Dolph associate’s latest album is full of hard-working hustler music that never lets up.

Before his senseless murder, Young Dolph took the defiant independence he maintained during his career and extended that support to a younger generation of hungry artists. The first of Dolph’s Padawans was his cousin Key Glock (who is a certified star in his own right), but Paper Route Empire has managed to expand its ranks into a tight-knit family that soldiers on despite the loss of its mentor. East Memphis native Big Moochie Grape stood out on this year’s Long Live Dolph tribute album with “In Dolph We Trust,” a dark and driving banger with an ornate beat built out of the skeleton of “Carol of the Bells,” and he makes a more extended introduction with his new project East Haiti Baby.

Flipping “Carol of the Bells” is a Memphis tradition. Since the holiday staple has been retrofitted into multiple beats by DJ Paul and Juicy J, its presence on Big Moochie’s breakout song places him in the city’s lineage. Moochie’s approach to making music is heavily steeped in the Memphis underground tradition, and his songs beg to be heard on the most powerful sound system you can find. Moochie first built his reputation as a rapper in Memphis by taking his tracks to the club right after he recorded them. It’s meant to be experienced as much as it’s meant to be listened to.

Big Moochie Grape’s punctuated flow is reminiscent of Project Pat’s. Moochie’s delivery isn’t overcomplicated, but it’s still effortlessly intricate, a rhythmic pitter-patter that’s slightly clipped while softened by his Southern drawl. Even Key Glock has his slower, more romantic numbers, but there’s no room for sentimentality in Big Moochie Grape’s world—his words come to us uncut and raw. Moochie doesn’t lose himself to despair despite the odds against him, and keeps his head up by focusing on the work, whether that’s spitting or serving. Big Moochie is tough enough to mostly stand on his own, but brothers-in-arms Key Glock and Kenny Muney come through with features, and there is a posthumous verse from Dolph on “Fun.”

The beats on East Haiti Baby are unsurprisingly the product of Bandplay, the architect of Paper Route Empire, whose sturdy drums gave Dolph and Glock a strong foundation for their flows. There’s a similar blueprint to every beat, but Bandplay mixes in unsettling keys and glistening bells that add a touch of Gothic darkness. A rare trace of soulfulness can be heard on title track “East Haiti Baby” courtesy of a sample of Blackstreet’s “No Diggity,” which interweaves Moochie’s flow with a soft background hum.

Many of the songs here have a hook built around a comparison between the artist and an unrelated pop culture icon, like the Biggie-indebted “Christopher Wallace” and the humorous “Joe Biden.” On “Rick Flair,” Big Moochie Grape most directly conceives of himself as a pro wrestler pulling no punches, and he makes scattered references to Hulk Hogan and Mick Foley throughout the album. Though there’s a slightly throwback flavor to Moochie’s sound, it’s not self-consciously referential like Duke Deuce’s crunk revivalism. Unfortunately, certain bars are an unwelcome throwback to some of the more regressive elements of classic Southern rap, in the form of some hard-to-miss homophobic slurs.

Unlike the countless rappers who have pilfered from Memphis over the last decade Big Moochie Grape doesn’t need to directly remake classics or recreate old sounds. East Haiti Baby captures the spirit of the city and its rap scene on a more existential level: It’s hard-working hustler music that never lets up, with a beat that never sleeps. Big Moochie Grape makes soundtracks not just for grinding, but for surviving.

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About Wanni Arachchige Udara Madusanka Perera

Hey, I'm Perera! I will try to give you technology reviews(mobile,gadgets,smart watch & other technology things), Automobiles, News and entertainment for built up your knowledge.
Big Moochie Grape - East Haiti Baby Music Album Reviews Big Moochie Grape - East Haiti Baby Music Album Reviews Reviewed by Wanni Arachchige Udara Madusanka Perera on Wednesday, June 15, 2022 Rating: 5

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