EP Review | Sylvan LaCue – Young Sylvan Ep. 2

This extended play was released on April 2nd this year. If you’ve been following this blog for a long time you should know that Sylvan LaCue is one of my favorite rappers. Searching Sylvan is my favorite mixtape ever, and Apologies in Advance was not only my favorite album of 2018, but also the soundtrack to one of the scariest episodes of my life, so he’s helped me through some dark times. Considering how much I loved the first entry in this Young Sylvan trilogy, I think I’m gonna really love this EP.

There aren’t any tracks that I don’t like from this EP, so I’ll talk about the full project in the proper order of the tracklist. The very first track is called Penal Code 182.5. I really like how ominous the production here is. I also like the kind of melodic flow that Sylvan spit with on his verse of this track.

What’s a verdict to a hedgеfund?
Give a shit 'bout where you bred from
Boomers toast in cubicles & red rum
Send a text & set it off like Rev Run
Paramedics show up late like its practice
Ain’t no honor when your honor’s a savage
My nigga Drakeo got acquitted, clearly no debating
Kept him tucked & labeled him hazard

The lyricism about the police thinking he robbed his own mother’s apartment had me hooked. I relistened to the first EP right before checking this one out, and I feel like the production here is a bit more detailed than it was on a lot of tracks from Young Sylvan Ep. 1. This track was my introduction to Drakeo the Ruler, who I’ve heard of but never listened to before. I guess he’s in jail right now, so Sylvan had him record the verse through the prison phone. It works surprisingly well. I really love how the percussion fades out and the beat just sounds really dramatic while Drakeo is performing. The actual verse that he spit is hard as hell too. It’s a little hard to understand some of it, but thankfully the lyrics are somehow on Genius.

I’m the leader of the new wave
I’m the nigga that boost 50 in 2 days
I’m the niggas that hogged the coop in two lanes
And I was only 21, but ain't nobody give me praise
It was me & Malene but ain't nobody get me saved
Niggas send death threats all on Twitter
But got the nerve to come to court & play the victim
How you real but wanna see me up in prison?
I ain't do it, now you mad 'cause the verdict not guilty; nigga, kill me

I think the song is really dope overall. The second track is called Trauma. The beat on this track starts off kinda slow, but I just really like how this track evolves over the course of 2 minutes. Sylvan himself takes kind of a minimalistic approach when it comes to the rapping. There’s pretty much just a hook with no real verse. The hook is pretty good though.

Trauma make a nigga want pressure
See him on site, no lecture
Fuck them ties, they severed
God on my line, whenever
Lose my cool, nah never
I ain’t just wise, I’m clever
Wonder how I keep it all together

I do like this song, but it feels more like an interlude than anything since there’s not much going on. For me, the additional background vocals and production embellishments are what make the song worth returning to. It’s far from a highlight, but I do like it to some extent. I think it’s a pretty good track. It’s followed by a highlight entitled Power Rangers. This one is hard as bricks. I love how loud and bombastic the production on this track is, and the hook is catchy as hell. I used to be obsessed with Power Rangers when I was little, so maybe that’s why I like this so much. The first verse of this song was tight, but the way his flow picked up for the second verse really caught my attention. I love how aggressively he was spitting here.

Walk you out this bitch in front your set like I’m Nino, nigga
I do not take too kindly to no threats, I just get evil, nigga
My du-rag flag stretch way out to my neck like Don Cheadle, nigga
John Cena when I pray to off your bread, you can’t see a nigga

This shit bangs, and the killer electric guitar solo from Orianthi is just the icing on the cake. That really pushed this song to the next level for me. I think this track is dope as hell. Track 4 is called Peter Pan.

This is the most popular song from the project if I’m not mistaken, so I was a little more excited for this one than the others. I really like the melodic hook on this track. The production honestly didn’t stand out to me that much, but I really like the melodic rapping.

All I ever wanted was a chopper and a chance
Make a Ruger sing soul survivor
I used to get out the trenches, coaches had me on the benches
’Til a nigga put forty on the visor
"30 under 30," do a nigga dirty
Feel like I ain't worthy ’til I got wiser
Pull up like Curry, always in a hurry
Even on site, niggas still couldn't find you

I really liked the flow he was spitting with when he first started the verse too. It was cool of him to actually acknowledge Polow da Don. I feel like people fail to recognize Polow da Don’s impact because I never hear anyone mentioning him. Anyway, I was very confused about the Grandmaster Vic feature that’s credited on this song at first, but after watching the music video I realized that he’s actually the one playing the violin on this song, which is really cool. A second verse probably could’ve pushed this song to the next level, but overall I think it’s pretty good. The penultimate song is entitled PS2, and it’s another highlight for me. This track has one of the best instrumentals on the album in my opinion, and the preceding track transitions into it really nicely. I love how dark and menacing the piano melody here sounds, and Grandmaster Vic’s contributions really pushed it to the next level in my opinion. This track has probably my favorite hook on the whole project. He also murdered the verse on this track. This track stands out a lot just because Sylvan’s vocal delivery is completely different. His flow is top notch, and he has a really calm, soft-spoken delivery. I loved that line about how he’s seen niggas fold over paper like origami. That was hard.

I might pull up in a platinum Benz
Throw your whole mood off on accident
That nigga Syl switch moods but his raps on ten
I got a problem with acknowledging my stats & wins
Humble or not, you niggas would be done on my block
You run to opps whenever sinners run up your spot
Your gun never pops, don't tell me you got one in the drop
Be hugging your thot whenever figures come for the guap
The fun never stops, my nigga I ain't come here to watch
I’m 'bout that action
Soon as any rumbling starts, I’m out here clashing

The song is dope as hell. It was cool to end it with that little shout to Speaker Knockerz. Bowser in the Sky is the closing track, and, as far as song structure goes, this is probably my favorite track just because Sylvan’s rapping the whole time and there’s no hook or bridge or anything like that. The beat doesn’t really stand out that much to me, but the verse here is great. For some reason I actually care about what’s going on in Sylvan’s life, so it’s cool for me to hear where his mind is at on songs like this. There were some funny lines buried in the verse here too, like this one…

I like patience ‘cause timing delivers solace when the threats hit
It’s chess not checkers
Baby girl ordered a 2nd round of drinks
But I wanna fuck, so I’m asking where the check is

I also thought the way the Eminem-like manner in which the song ended was pretty funny. Overall, I think this is one of the better songs on the album. It’s really dope to me.

This project is great to me. I definitely don’t think this one is as stellar as the first entry, but it’s still worth listening to if you enjoyed that one. The main appeal for me is still Sylvan’s rapping. I don’t really have an issue with anything he did here. The one area that I think could use some improvement is the production, but Sylvan himself killed this shit. I’m looking forward to the final entry in the series. This shit is dope. Check it out.

Favorite Song: Power Rangers
Least Favorite Song: Trauma


Grade: B+

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