Tardy EP Review | Slum Rugglers – bbbbbbbb2

This EP was released on June 23rd this year. Slum Rugglers is probably a name you’re familiar with if you’re a fan of MIKE’s work. That’s how I became familiar with them. I thought it was just one dude for a while, but I recently found out that they’re a duo comprised of David Carey & Isaac Baird. Obviously since they often work with MIKE they mainly do a lot of lo-fi production. I usually just think of them as producers, but they’ve featured rapping on a few of their songs before. I’m not exactly sure which member of the group is the rapper. I’m pretty sure it’s only one of them. If anyone reading this knows, please leave it in the comments below. Anyway, I haven’t heard that much of their music to be honest. I listened to the collaborative EP they did with MIKE in 2017, which was pretty great. That’s definitely my favorite thing that they’ve done. I also checked out the first installment in this bbbbbbbb series, and thought it was okay. There were a lot of things I liked about it, but it was a bit too inconsistent for me. That single they dropped earlier this year called Toes Get Stepped On was the first time I heard whichever member provides the vocals rap, and I thought the song was pretty good. I wasn’t really going into this project with high expectations since I wasn’t crazy about the first one, but I knew I would get at least a few dope tracks out of it, and that’s pretty much exactly what happened.

As usual, I’ll discuss the tracks I actually liked before talking about what I wasn’t feeling. Anyway, the project starts off with fff, and the beat on this one is actually really fucking cool. It’s super dark, and a little unsettling. The percussion actually kinda reminds me of the way the opening song from Lando Chill’s Black Ego album starts. A sample fades in after about half a minute to add a bit of soulfulness, which is a pretty nice touch. The dark percussion ceases after a while, and the sample actually sounds pretty gorgeous when it’s by itself. The beat abruptly switches up about halfway through the track, and it’s honestly a little jarring. The second part of the song is dope though. This part actually features some rapping, but, as I stated before, I’m not sure which one of them is performing the verse. The rapping isn’t amazing or anything, but it’s not really bad. The main appeal of the song is definitely the production for me though. I actually think the song is dope af. I love it. The following track is even better to me to be honest. The production is genuinely beautiful. The song is a lot more straightforward than the opening track since it’s just one instrumental with far less variation. I like it more though. At this point on my first listen, I was legitimately shocked by how much more I was enjoying this project than the first installment of bbbbbbbb. This higher level of quality unfortunately didn’t last throughout the remainder of the project, but I did end up enjoying one more song. The third track, hands off, is relatively underwhelming, but I still like it to some extent. I really like the chill production. This song features more rapping, and the vocalist employed a voice synthesizer. It’s more of a hook than a full verse. It sounds cool though. Again, the song is inferior to the first two tracks, but I still enjoyed it overall. It’s pretty good. That’s it though. I didn’t care for any of the other tracks. I don’t wanna give off the wrong impression; the rest of the songs aren’t actually bad. They just aren’t very entertaining to me personally. The fourth track, a million people, kinda sounds like a Vaporwave song to me, and I’m not into that genre at all. This song switches up multiple times, and I don’t care for any of it. It’s not a super trash, unlistenable piece of shit. I’ve just never been into Vaporwave, so it doesn’t appeal to me. The fifth song, my flame, is pretty frustrating to me. I really love the glitchy, lo-fi production on this one. However, the vocals on this song are fucking awful. They’re really buried in the mix, so it’s a little difficult to discern the lyrics. That’s not even the problem though. The melodic delivery just sounds like shit. Whoever that is can’t sing at all. It sounds so bad. I really wish it was just an instrumental because I love the beat, but the melodic rapping ruined it for me. lost today is a pleasant enough beat I suppose. It just doesn’t really capture my attention. It really falls into the background whenever I listen to it. It sounds more like an interlude than a full song since there isn’t much going on in the song. Pretty much everything I said about that song could be said about the following track, how does it feel. The only real difference is that this one is a bit more upbeat. It still lacks replay value for me. Honestly, I actually felt the exact same way about the closing track, make it. It’s just a really underwhelming track, and a bizarrely dull way to end the project. 😦

Overall, I think this is an okay project. There weren’t any songs I thought were legitimately bad. I don’t even think the worst song on here is “mediocre.” It’s all just decent at worst. I think the first bbbbbbbb EP was more consistent, but this one has higher highs. Ultimately, they’re virtually equal in terms of overall quality in my opinion. I’m glad I checked this out because there are some really great highlights, but I just wish the quality of the first couple tracks was maintained for the entire project. Hopefully if they release a third one it’ll be better. I definitely think this is worth listening to if you’re into lo-fi Hip Hop. Just don’t expect to be blown away.

Favorite Song: never been one like you
Least Favorite Song: make it


Grade: C+

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