This self titled album was released on July 12th this year. Mr. Muthafuckin’ eXquire is actually one of the first underground rappers I ever listened to. There was a shit ton of discussion around his two most popular mixtapes, Lost in Translation & Kismet, but ever since the latter dropped, he’s kind of been an obscure, overlooked artist. I can’t even act like I wasn’t part of the problem because for whatever reason I just stopped checking his shit out. I love Lost in Translation & Kismet, but until recently those were the only two projects I’d ever heard from him. The funny thing is that I think his more recent work is better. His Brainiac EP is my favorite project from him, but I also really like Live Forever, as well as the two most recent Christmas tapes. I wonder if he’ll release a fourth Christmas mixtape in the future. That’d be cool. It’s actually kinda crazy that he didn’t drop this debut album until this year. He’s been putting out music ever since 2008, and none of it has been bad. He’s had projects that I’ve not really been a fan of, such as Live from the Danger Room & the first Christmas mixtape, but his work is mediocre at worst in my opinion. Some of his songs really blow me the fuck away every time I listen though. I’m really looking forward to this project, and I’m hoping that it’ll be one of the better albums I’ve heard this year. However, I’ve seen some people say it was a slight disappointment, so I’m not gonna get my expectations up too high.
I thankfully think this album is great personally. However, I kind of think I understand why some may be a little let down because it’s not his best work in my opinion. I wouldn’t say I’m disappointed though. There’s only one song that I don’t really care for, so I’ll talk about the full project in the proper order of the tracklist. The album begins with FCK Boy!, which is my second favorite track on the album.
This is probably what people were expecting the entire album to sound like, but he ended up saying that he just included this song to make his fans happy since this is the kinda shit they want from him. Since it’s not really representative of the rest of the album it doesn’t make much sense as an intro. It probably would’ve been better as a bonus track honestly, but it’s still an amazing song. I think the production from GRiMM DOZA is fantastic. It sounds really cinematic and evil sounding. For some reason it made me think of MF DOOM; I guess it’s because it sounds really villainous. X fucking snapped on that first verse, and the hook is awesome, but it’s really the second verse that pushed the song to the next level for me.
Cancel Mike, bitch you gotta cancel Elvis too
R. Kelly can rot in hell, but his music is too good to mute
Telling me no more ‘Ignition’ while I’m dancing
But then I’m ‘posed to stand for the fucking national anthem?
Suck a dick and get a clue ’cause reparations are due
A bunch of knuckle-draggin’ coons rockin’ a Gucci fabric noose
Fuck Prada, Burberry, fuck Louis Vuitton too
They ain’t do nothing racist, but that’s just in case they do
This shit is hard as FUCK, man. I love it. The verse on the outro was stellar as well. His flow was superb. I have zero issues with the song at all. It’s dope af. The following track is an interlude called The eXplanation in which someone who I assume is a comedian speaks about how her favorite word is “muthafucka.” I’m not sure who it is. I don’t know why the first person who came to mind was Wanda Sykes. I never really found her particularly funny personally, but that’s neither here nor there. Anyway, she talks about how certain people should change their middle name to “muthafucka,” which actually isn’t a bad idea. “OG Nick Muthafuckin’ Marsh” sounds pretty good to me. Anyway, the next track is called Polarity, and it’s pretty cool, although not a favorite of mine at all. I like the beat from Conquest Phillips a lot. X’s flow at the very beginning of the first verse had me worried, but my concerns were quashed by the time the first quatrain was over. The first verse is pretty tight. The hook is nothing special, but it works. The second verse is solid, but I just wish he didn’t use the same flow and delivery throughout the whole song. The song is still good, but it would’ve been more enjoyable for me if he switched it up at some point. I fuck with it though. It’s a cool track. The fourth track is called A Definite Maybe, and it’s the only single I’d heard before checking out the full project.
The song is dope af. I really love the chaotic production from Constrobuz. I’m not really crazy about X’s singing on the intro, which is a bit disappointing since I usually like his vocals. It’s not that his singing was bad. It’s just that the melody isn’t really good, and it doesn’t fit over the loud ass beat very well. Thankfully he murdered the first verse, and he gets bonus points for name-dropping a medication I used to take. I don’t know why shit like that excites me lol.
Kicked me outta middle school
I pistol-whipped the principal
Zoloft mixed with fentanyl
Be brilliant, then be miserable
I don’t really have any complaints about the verse honestly. I was a little worried at first because it seemed like he was gonna use the same flow throughout the whole verse, but that didn’t end up being the case, and even if it did it wouldn’t be that big of a deal because it’s so fucking good.
Niggas don’t be lyrical, they just be spittin’ syllables
Like “Godzilla in swimmin’ pools,” but that’s a wicked visual
I’m not really into the melodic hook from Wiki, but it’s not too bad. Wiki’s verse was solid I guess, but I’d be lying if I said he really added a lot to the song for me. He had some cool lines though. I probably would’ve liked this even more if it was a solo track, but I don’t mind Wiki that much. The final verse from X is fire. I really love the way the production gets more melodic towards the final part of the song, but still maintains the cacophony that permeates the track. It kinda makes me think of the whole “wall of sound” idea that comes from Shoegaze music. It’s awesome. The song is dope af. It’s definitely one of my favorite tracks on the project. It’s followed by Pink Champagne, which is one of the weaker songs in my opinion, but I still like it.
I really like his strange melodic delivery, although it would’ve been nice if he switched it up for the second verse. The production is just more of what you’d expect from an eXquire song produced by Constrobuz, but it’s still pretty good. The repetitive flow and delivery kinda gets old after a while, and there aren’t that many standout lines to me, but he was rhyming well. I think it’s a good song, but it’s my least favorite track up to this point on the album. The following song is called Nosediive, and it’s even less enjoyable to me than the preceding track, but I still like it.
The smooth production from Parallel Thought is great, and I really like the first verse from X too. The content about the negative effect of media on society is cool, but it sadly devolves into some conspiracy theory bullshit about how we’re being manipulated. I can enjoy it if I don’t take it too seriously, but I really could’ve done without the Alex Jones sample. eXquire’s singing on the hook sounds pretty great to me. It’s really smooth. I also appreciate how he acknowledges that he’s probably just paranoid. It makes it easier to take seriously in my opinion. I’m not familiar with the featured rapper, KAST, but he did his thing. He kinda sounded like Fabolous to me at first, but he’s thankfully nowhere near as much of a cornball as him. The song is pretty good, but far from a favorite of mine. The following track is called Up, and it’s another interlude with a sample of a comedian. I have no idea who it is though. I didn’t really pay attention to what he was saying because I was too focused on the gorgeous instrumental from Arian Hagen. It’s fantastic. The next song is called Better Clothes & Nicer Lies, and I really wasn’t expecting anything like this to be on the album. It’s dope as hell though. The Trap production from Iceberg Black is awesome, and he did a really great job with the first verse too. His flow is really fucking good. It’s impossible for me to not get an involuntary head nod while listening to him kill that first verse. I might have to look into more of his work because he seems really talented. X’s verse was actually pretty rough to me at first, but I was pleased by the time it ended. I like how angry he sounded, but his flow at the beginning was shaky, and I wasn’t crazy about his delivery either. I actually think Iceberg Black had the better performance, but eXquire held his own. I love the song; I just wish it didn’t end so abruptly. The next song is called RumbleFish, and it’s pretty dope. I really like the dreamy instrumental, and I appreciate the more introspective lyricism from X on this track. The one thing that I kinda dislike about the song is the hook. It just sounds really messy to me. I don’t know how to explain it. It’s not too bad. I just think it could’ve been better. The second verse is really fantastic. He goes into more about his family history, talking about how his mother used to date a crazy dude who ended up getting incarcerated for murdering his ex-girlfriend. The song is really good. It’s unfortunately followed by my least favorite track, and the only song that I don’t care for at all, I Love Hoes. I kinda like the messy, loud, dreamy, cloudy production, but the hook is honestly really bad. It’s obviously not meant to be taken too seriously, but it’s just not very entertaining to me. The content is very relatable, but it’s not something I really care to hear about in a song personally. However, I will admit that this is the most relatable line of the year because I literally did the exact same thing.
Made a private IG just so I can follow hoes
I have a private instagram account called @fartdrips just to follow thots. No, I will not accept your follow requests. Anyway, the song is mediocre to me, but I wouldn’t actually say it’s bad. I’m never gonna listen to it again though. The penultimate track is called Nothing’s What It Seems: Short Film, and it’s easily my favorite song on the album. It’s fucking incredible. This song alone is what makes the album great. I’d probably be disappointed if the album didn’t have something this good, but I can’t complain when this shit exists. The first beat on this song is really nice, and the storytelling on the first verse is really well done. At first I wasn’t that impressed because the story isn’t that original or creative in the first verse. I had no idea where it was going though. By the time the song was over my jaw was on the floor. The second beat on the track is fucking awesome, and the story gets much more interesting at this point. At one point eXquire sings a few lines, and it sounds pretty rough honestly, but it’s not nearly bad enough to ruin the song for me. The third verse is fucking insane. He utilizes a vocal effect to make himself sound like a woman in order to rap from the perspective of the love interest in the story, and I genuinely thought that there was an uncredited female rapper featured on the song on my first listen. This is 100x more believable than when Nas rapped as that “Scarlet” character on Street’s Disciple. When Nas did it, he literally just sounded like himself with a higher voice. It sounds like X actively tried to make himself sound more feminine, and it’s nowhere near as corny. I wouldn’t be opposed to him being nominated for an Oscar for playing the role of a female prostitute so well. He fucking killed this shit, man. It’s amazing. Again, the story seemed like it was gonna be basic and unoriginal at first, but it ended up being really captivating. I shouldn’t have doubted him in the first place though because he’s always been a great storyteller. This shit is so crazy though. The one word that came to mind when I listened to it for the first time was “epic,” which is a word that I never use because I think it’s corny. It’s the best way to describe the song though. It’s a really awe-inspiring track. I love it. It’s dope af. The final track isn’t really a song. It’s called Silence, but it’s just X speaking about the creative process and purpose of the album. It’s basically what you’d get out of an interview with him. Towards the end of the track he unironically says that we’re living in a simulation. I feel like that’d probably make some people roll their eyes, but I was indifferent towards it. I just didn’t really react to it. There was a point in my life where I believed the same thing, but that was at the height of my psychotic episode. Even if I still believed I was living in a simulation, I don’t think I’d care that much. It’s not like that really changes anything. This doesn’t matter though. The album’s over at this point.
I think this album is great. There are only a handful of songs that I really love, but I don’t think anything here is bad at all. At worst, the material on this album is mediocre, and at best it’s breathtaking. It’s definitely not my favorite project from him, but I’m satisfied with this release. I’m hoping his next album will be even better than this, but I can’t say I’m disappointed. It’s not an Album of the Year contender for me, but it definitely has some Song of the Year contenders on it. Any fan would be a fool to skip this release, and I think it’s a decent jumping in point for new listeners too. This shit is dope.
Favorite Song: Nothing’s What It Seems
Least Favorite Song: I Love Hoes
Watch the video below for more thoughts on this album.