Westside Gunn - Peace “Fly” God Music Album Reviews

Westside Gunn - Peace “Fly” God Music Album Reviews
The latest from the Buffalo rapper is a lean, mean project cut in just two days, eschewing his usual attention to detail for a more ramshackle approach.

Westside Gunn wants you to consider his music high-end art, as worthy of reverence as the pieces that fill his own seven-figure-valued collection, or the Caravaggio repurposed for one of his album covers. Appropriately, Gunn’s take on slimy-grimy New York boom-bap can feel opulent and luxurious. His best albums are rich and immersive; his street raps are adorned with pristine instrumentation, and he makes frequent references to luxury fashion brands, expensive vehicles, and the artists that appeal to his proclivities.

Peace “Fly” God is a change-up. The project was cut in an intense two-day studio session following the Buffalo rapper’s return from Paris Fashion Week, where he attended the late Virgil Abloh’s Off-White exhibition. The resulting music eschews Gunn’s usual attention to detail for a ferocious burst of off-the-cuff creativity. There are few hooks or overarching themes. Affiliates Estee Nack and Stove God Cooks end up doing much of the heavy lifting on the mic​​—both are decent foils, but they’re not exactly at the level of Gunn’s Griselda brethren Conway the Machine and Benny the Butcher. The tracklist feels hastily assembled as it simply arranges songs by producer. Even the album title uses curious punctuation—“Fly” God as opposed to Flygod–as if scribbled by a clueless engineer on the masters. Yet for all these eccentricities, the ramshackle approach creates a compelling alternative to his more methodically assembled music. Peace “Fly” God will go down as a minor Gunn release, but it provides a welcome detour from the prolific artist’s usual methodology.

Due to his aesthetic consistency, Gunn is sometimes unfairly accused of making the same song over and over again. Peace “Fly” God alters the formula by shedding the beats down to rough soul samples and very little else. So you get a song like “Ritz Barlton,” produced by Don Carrera, who helms the entire first half of the 10-song tape. The warped piano and horns sound like they were mined from an old jazz record that was left out to bake in the afternoon sun. The eight-minute runtime of “Jesus Crack” pushes a beat that leans almost entirely on a repetitive vocal sample to its limits. So stretched is Estee Nack’s elongated verse that he needs a couple of breathers. There is a neat trick at the end of Gunn’s section, however, when he describes playing Grand Puba of 1990s rap group Brand Nubian in his Tesla jeep and a section of their song “Slow Down” comes in, bringing some relief to the otherwise unchanging arrangement.

The best beats unsurprisingly come during the three-track streak of Madlib productions. In keeping with the minimalist nature of the project’s arrangements, this is the Beat Konducta at his leanest and meanest, lining up a string-drenched sample on “Derrick Boleman,” the only hint of percussion coming from a bassline on the original recording. On “Horses on Sunset,” Cooks matches Madlib’s downbeat orchestration with a sad and striking lament: “They said they shot him six times/I said you should have shot him seven, then he could have died.” The lonely piano chords of “Open Praise” are beautiful, making Gunn sound like a forsaken hero walking down a dark, rain-streaked street.

Gunn makes himself scarce throughout Peace “Fly” God—it’s a good five minutes into the tape before we hear his voice—but when he does materialize, the soon-to-be 40-year-old’s high-intensity howl is as gripping as ever as he raps about all his favorite things. There is the exceptional “Big Ass Bracelet,” where he drops enough brand names to make 2000s Jay-Z sound modest: Hermès furniture, Adidas x Gucci’s collaboration range, MF DOOM’s Nike Dunk High shoes. Gunn’s trick, though, is not allowing his expensive taste to alienate listeners. On “Ritz Barlton” he describes a sexual encounter at a halfway house that made him feel like he had a suite in a luxury hotel. And though there are fewer pusherman raps than usual, Gunn is still comfortable in that lane. On “Derrick Boleman,” he describes the smell of cocaine filling his loft while Cooks lays out his 44 bricks in honor of former NBA all-star Derrick Coleman’s number. Gunn may have presence in the art and fashion worlds these days, but Peace “Fly” God still invites us to believe in his on-record persona: a hustler with fantasies of living life like a modern day Gatsby.

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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.
Westside Gunn - Peace “Fly” God Music Album Reviews Westside Gunn - Peace “Fly” God Music Album Reviews Reviewed by Wanni Arachchige Udara Madusanka Perera on Thursday, July 21, 2022 Rating: 5

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