Don’t Sleep | ManDaMyth

Don’t sleep on this debut album from ManDaMyth. It was released on October 7th last year, and it’s probably one of the most slept on albums I’ve covered on this blog recently. The reason I checked it out in the first place was because it’s one of the first projects to be released under Bloodmoney Perez‘s Damn That Noise label, and it’s got contributions from a bunch of artists that I really like such as Unsung and Defcee. Most of the production was handled by SINAI a.k.a. Sleep Sinatra. Sleep also contributed a verse to this project, which just made this album even more enticing to me. I kinda had a feeling that I would love this record before I even listened to it just because everything about it seemed to be right up my alley. Aside from the intriguing features and production credits, I also just really love the album cover that was designed by Czarheel. Thankfully, this record didn’t let me down.

Since this isn’t a full album review I’m just gonna mention a few personal highlights. The first track I wanna talk about is actually the opening song, TroDucEnd. This one’s produced by Unsung, and the beat is pretty awesome. I mean, it’s kind of an off-kilter instrumental, but that shouldn’t come as a surprise if you’re familiar with Unsung’s work. The horn loop sounds fantastic, and I love the weird percussion. ManDaMyth opens this album up by talking about how the first dead body he ever saw belonged to his grandfather. Once he actually starts rapping, I’m immediately hooked by his wordy lyricism.

My consciousness extends beyond what fits in your camera
Any arch-nemesis targets Myth, always miss into anima
Families, Columbian neckties, Gorilla in the Mist, bandana's on
An eclectic mix of vagabonds, we'll have to respond
With fire, brimstone, other ammo nice with ivory handles and taunts
Pullin' intestines out by handfuls, and large crowds stand and applaud
The man who spoke in manner is raw, like a million ravenous dogs
Were crammed in his jaw, and dismantle and spawn to false capitalist guns
What's his actual job? Life's good, just the facts of Allah
Shoot at crooked politicians in a slaughterhouse
Blastin' Death Is Certain, yellin' "pass the cigar!"
Outside Angelo's in East Aurora, that's how active we are
Got you turkey leg with some Alaskan cod
Mother was white, but taught me I'm an African god
And that my queen spoke many languages
Translating scriptures from lands from afar
And any devil that crossed my path would falter as I collapse in star
And that's where we are

I definitely misquoted some of those lines, but the point is that he killed that opening verse. I love how he came back in for a second verse too. This song is fire. I don’t know whether I’m more impressed by the production or the rapping. This was an awesome way to open up the project. It’s dope as hell. The next highlight I wanna mention is called God Song. This one has a fantastic, kind of somber sounding instrumental from SINAI. It kinda reminds me of the beat from Jay-Z’s Where Have You Been. Once again, ManDaMyth killed his verse here.

God Song, universe unfolds
Original, not a clone from universal modes
Move to crucial code, God fearing troops that move alone
Making music for the common man, unusual tomes

Of course Defcee’s verse was phenomenal as well. My reasoning for loving this song so much is pretty simple; everything is just super well done. I love the beat, and the writing is really captivating. I love rappers like these guys, man. There are zero filler bars in these guys’ verses. Every single line contributes to the overall picture that they’re painting. I love the intricate rhyme schemes that both of them employed.

The bando's cheek stained with Earth tones
The streetlights sing, and the train tracks' curse grown
Cerulean dusk as I track the moon's crushed groove
From the smooth brushstroke of this bus route

Once again, I don’t know whether I love the production or the rapping more. I think I like this track even more than the opener. I don’t know. I haven’t chosen a favorite track from this album yet. Anyway, I think this song is fire. It’s followed by another highlight entitled Esoteric. Once again, the production from SINAI is superb. As ManDaMyth puts it, “this feels like some Hiero shit.” He slaughtered this shit too. I was very impressed by the length of the verses. I mean, I’m a strong proponent of “just because your verse is long doesn’t mean it’s good.” However, this song has the substance to keep things entertaining.

Promised lands reached by various courses and roads
Hypocrites speak of God, hate poisons their bones
Party over bullshit, nah, I be posted at home
In the field puttin' in work, nowhere close to a throne
Royalty goes to guru for shouldering the stone
Atlas shrugged, no one on Earth would throw me a bone

He sounds really hungry on this track. I love it. It’s dope as hell. The following track is called Book Endz, and it opens with another awesome verse from Defcee.

The evil men do to prove we're the good guys
Some kick it with their Jiminy Crickets, I smush mine
The spine reads "Unauthorized Biography"
Bookended my bullshit with dust jacket apology
Conditional honesty the policy I follow
All the words right, but their typography is hollow
Subverting language like it's kanji when I wallow
The good that I've drawn to me is marketing or borrowed

The production from SINAI is pretty chill. It makes me think of sepia. I know that’s random as hell. I don’t really experience chromesthesia, but that’s what this beat made me think of. I love it. ManDaMyth comes in right behind Defcee with another stellar performance. I really enjoyed that line about how “politicians couldn’t survive a paper cut to their foreskin.” To be completely honest, I don’t know if I could survive that either… Anyway, this is another big highlight for me on the album. I think it’s dope as hell. The following track is entitled Floating, and it features Sleep Sinatra. This track definitely has my favorite beat up to this point on the album. It’s a really pretty instrumental. It sounds like a beautiful garden in the form of music. Or like a really pretty lake with lily pads. I feel like I’m kinda starting to sound like a broken record at this point, but ManDaMyth killed this shit. He rhymes really well, and has a pretty easy-to-grasp flow. If you’ve been following this blog for a while, you know I’m a big fan of Sleep Sinatra, and his verse didn’t disappoint at all. I honestly think that dude sounds best over his own production. Well, he sounds amazing on anything, but when he’s on his own beats it just feels like a perfect marriage. It’s like peanut butter and jelly.

Presence atmospheric, make the pressure change
Lessons gained, flex my mental like heavy kettle strains
Higher than heaven's aim, set apart when the message came
Destined to bring my truth to go against the grain
There's no illusion past the cloud, then you get to rain
Pick my brain, then harmony's gettin' tuned up
Been too much, absorbin' the pain with a red cup
Pour one for the young lives, victims of lead bust
Elevating, free fall to my fate with dead trust
The universe got me even if I owe it a head's up

He killed this shit. This is honestly one of my favorite songs of the year I think. There’s not a single aspect of this track that I don’t love. It’s dope af. The next highlight I wanna talk about is called Precipice. SINAI’s production on this track is fucking awesome. I love the way he flipped that weird ass sample, and the percussion sounds fantastic. This song has a really pretty hook too. I think at this point it goes without saying that the actual verses are right up my alley.

You sippin' ace of spades thinkin' you Jigga, huh?
But once a Weinstein enters you bitch niggas are sippin' cum
Listen to Keith Murray, in the beginning tucked in my tongue
I always keep a razor in the pocket, surgical with drums

I also appreciate him showing love to a bunch of other underground artists I fuck with. It’s not just on this song. He mentioned AJ Suede, Zilla Rocca, Wrecking Crew, Rich Jones, Iceberg Theory, Davis, and probably more that I don’t even remember. Anyway, I love the production on this track, and ManDaMyth sounded great over it. The song’s dope as hell. It’s followed by Arrow Headz, which is even more enjoyable to me. This one’s got a kind of glitchy, yet melodic beat from Unsung. It’s really fucking cool. I love the relatively fast-paced flow from ManDaMyth on this track too. This is definitely one of the most energetic songs on the project. There are a lot of really cool lines here too.

Cowards, if they're noided are we really shocked?
Hardest motherfucker, move like soap on the block
Above the law forever, cold 187 on corrupt cops
I'm like cocaine sprinkled on the vocal chords of God

The Cold 187um reference was fire, and of course the “vocal chords of God” line stood out a lot. This is the shortest song on the album, but it doesn’t feel incomplete or anything. It’s just one fantastic verse over a really awesome beat. Also, the closing line stands out a lot, but I won’t spoil it. I think the song’s dope as hell. The following track is another highlight called Damascus. I know I’m saying this about pretty much every beat on this project, but SINAI’s instrumental here is awesome. It’s really melodic, yet kind of chaotic sounding. The hook on this track is really dope too, and of course the verses are fantastic.

I rise like a phoenix ignited in a double helix
Born in a room where angels abort the demons
Soul survivors made me Numskull and looney for a reason
Uncle Sam is overreaching
What's the point of a kingdom if it becomes where no queen would live?
It sounds like a place of disease and grim
Outlook's bleak, everything is leading to an end

He rhymed really well on this track. I also love the sound effects in the background. You can hear the sound of a sword being swung during the hook, which is really cool. Overall, I think this is another one of the better songs on the album. It’s dope as hell to me. Track 13 is called Out da Rut, and it’s got a really awesome instrumental from MJC. It actually kinda reminds me of something that Aesop Rock or Homeboy Sandman would rhyme over. ManDaMyth killed the opening verse.

Find me under porch light, the doors to perception
Left handed darkness, aggressive, extended in your direction
Step in the cypher, your DNA becomes decoded, showing you're nothing special
Cardiac arrest then, you get no liberation of death's threshold, I ignored lessons

The second verse is performed by IL. Subliminal. I’m not super familiar with his work, but I really enjoyed his performance on Rich Jones’ Smoke Detector album, so I was sure that I would enjoy him here, and I wasn’t wrong. He sounds awesome over this beat. His flow was really nice, and the Joaquin Phoenix lines made me laugh by the time the verse was over. This is honestly another one of my favorite songs on the album, and I think it’s one of the best songs of 2022. The production is amazing, and both the MCs killed it. The song’s dope af. The penultimate track is entitled Bullseye, and it’s produced by Spector Gadget a.k.a. Bloodmoney Perez. I love this beat. I feel like it just gets more and more chaotic as the song progresses. The first verse is great; I love the references to Vic Spencer and Sean Price. The second verse is even better though in my opinion.

I will not apologize for speaking my roots
Police see me and shoot
Listen to my people's screams for proof
Gino & Garcia in the booth
Keep it 100
This ain't the type of shit that you've seen since in Juice

The song’s dope as hell. The closing track is entitled A Final Interruption, and it’s got a really nice, jazzy instrumental from Sovren. This track is structured pretty differently from the other tracks. It starts with a great verse from ManDaMyth, and then the beat kinda just rides out for a couple minutes after that. I think in most cases I wouldn’t be super impressed by a song that has this kind of structure, but this one is just really well done. I love the instrumental, and the verse is great. The song’s dope as hell to me.

This album is dope as hell. I think it’s one of the best albums I’ve heard from 2022. I knew I was gonna enjoy it to some extent, but it definitely surpassed my expectations. ManDaMyth is a super talented lyricist. He’s apparently been rapping for over three decades, and it shows. This album kinda reminds me of the debut albums of KILLVONGARD and Malachi. Whitman. I really like debut projects like this that ostensibly come out of nowhere from supremely talented artists. Where the hell has this dude been hiding? I appreciate how he waited to drop an album, and just worked on his craft for three decades before making his debut. I can tell that he wanted to start things off on the right note, and he definitely succeeded. I really have no consistent gripes with this album. The production is phenomenal, and I love the dense lyricism. The features all came through with stellar performances. People have got to start appreciating Sleep Sinatra more for his production skills. I feel like people are sleeping on SINAI. This shit is fire. Don’t sleep on it. I think this album is exceptional.

Favorite Song: Floating
LEast Favorite Song: Drowning


Grade: A-

Tell me if I'm trippin'

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s