If you’re a fan of rap especially old school hip hop, than you’ve probably noticed the sound and feel of that genre of music has changed over the years. With the exception of a few rappers like J Cole, Kendrick Lamar, and Big Krit just to name a few, most rappers today don’t have much lyrical substance. Most of us like to listen to ratchet music every once in a while but it’s also nice to hear songs that can stimulate the mind.
At the end of last year we got a chance to catch Big Krit’s final show off of his Kritically Acclaimed tour in Atlanta. Neither of us are big fans of local opening acts but one young mc stood out at the show. He was a South Carolina artist by the name of Nick Grant and as soon as he got on stage he looked into the crowd and told us that his job was to make us remember his name, and that he did.
After the show we had to know more about Nick so we researched him and discovered he had been making music for a minute. We were just blown away by his lyricism. He released his mixtape 88 at the beginning of last month and the buzz since its release still hasn’t let up. He named the album after the year he was born (1988) and because that year was considered the “golden era” of hip hop.
His sound is reminiscent of the late 90s and early 2000s but at the same time still current. Although he is from the south his sound is very northern. He reminds you of rappers like Nas, Common and Jadakiss. There were a lot of dope songs on the mixtape; some of our faves were Black Sinatra, Gold Chains, Contradiction, Royalty, and The Jungle.
Black Sinatra has a Jay Z/The Blue Print feel to it and is loaded with metaphoric lyricism over a smooth beat.
Gold Chains speaks on how people have become mentally enslaved to material things.
“Niggas dying for Gold Chains
Niggas dying for Gold Chains
Nigga we mentally enslaved
Buy Gold Chains do anything to drive a Range nigga
Contradiction was another one of our favorites. It’s the love song that talks about what many women are afraid to hear; the guy who loves you but just can’t commit.
She said love don’t cost a thing
Won’t expose her heart to pain
I said love done came and went
It packed up and caught the train
And of course as avid Big Krit fans we were definitely loving the Royalty remix which also featured Killer Mike. Grant is definitely not afraid to speak out on relevant issues that are taking place in society but like he said in Window Seat, another song off of the mixtape, “don’t call him gangster or conscious, he’s just being real and honest.”
88 will definitely appease the appetites of hungry hip hop fans.