If you’re going to copy, make sure you do it well. In a flagrant (let’s be kind) homage to DJ Mustard, Mickey Singh returns with the strong “Body” – of course, not literally, as when you see him in a sleeveless top, he’s quite a few reps away from his target. It’s got a good groove, a decent melody, a repetitive chorus and well chosen guests. The video is a bit on-the-nose, but it’s quite fascinating to see the evolution of Singh into his current form. It should certainly work pretty well in the club, which is the intended target. (Reviewed by Raman)
As you probably already know, we’ve been following the progress of Swami Baracus for a number of years now. There is so much that is truly refreshing about him, but one of the main things – aside from his stunning lyricism – is that he clearly cares about improving. This is self-evident on “Believe In Me” – an excellent track that features a real grower of a chorus from RKZ. SiNGAM’s production is spot on, the video is subtly impressive too, and now that his mixtape “The Recipe” is finally finished, we sincerely hope that independent labels will start to take note. Swami Baracus is the Rakim of this Asian rap game. (Reviewed by Jesal)
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A somewhat bewildering choice from Shizzio. Following the Wiley beef, not to mention co-signs from Jay Sean, plus features on numerous ladder-climbing opportunities, you’d have rather hoped that he would step it up and come with something big. But “Live for the Moment” is more intent on closing the first chapter of his career, which culminates in another free mixtape (this time, cherrypicking his best moments). It makes perfect sense, as does almost everything Shizzio does, so fair enough if it is a personal favourite. But the song itself is, unfortunately, let down by a coasting (though melodic) effort from Moghul, and a particularly weak chorus. The verses, however, are excellent: Shizzio is gaining in confidence as a lyricist, his flow is tight and he’s one of the few Asian rappers to have grasped the basic tenets of hip hop. The general feeling seems to be that Shizzio’s voice has been his downfall, but most rappers face similar difficulties and eventually power through. He does, it must be said, garble his words a bit, and needs to accentuate a touch more. Regardless, you get the feeling that he’s really focussing on his album, and “Live for the Moment” is a way to keep him on the radar.
Whilst we here at SuperCritic refrain from scoring freestyles and cover songs, we can’t help but break the rules for Raxstar and RKZ’s reinterpretation of Mike Posner’s “Cooler Than Me” – for it is simply outstanding, and betters the original in almost every way. In fact, the video is barely even necessary: when you first hear Raxstar’s words, his artful description is so dead on that you’re there, witnessing everything unfold in real time, in that club. The simple piano backing is perfect, allowing the artists the space necessary, and RKZ – for what might be the very first time – really excels on the chorus (his growing confidence hinting at a singing career over rapping). It’s one of those efforts that makes you wish that the original simply didn’t exist, so that this could be a fully-recognised original in its own right. Yes, it’s that good.
This song is starting to gain some serious traction. That’s not surprising: it has a decent video, the chorus is catchy, it has a funny cameo from Charlie Sloth and the Zaheer beat is something like an R Kelly (pre-insanity) party beat. It’s not the kind of song that is designed to withstand critical assessment. That’s lucky, because you could pick holes in it ALL DAY. The main problem is that Sam Khan (or his character) comes across as a bit of a dick. I mean, who really does that? Try and steal somebody’s girl at a house party? He’s talking about love, but treating it like lust, and it’s quite jarring. It’s OK to be a dick on record – hey, Jay-Z did it on his first 5 albums – but there’s an art to it that Sam Khan clearly hasn’t quite mastered yet.