So, I got this one in my timeline through @LinesofVicRippa, a supporter account of Mississippi artist Vic Rippa.
Vic's newest release, "Karate Kicks and Broken Boards" is a solid effort. But, I'd be lying if I said it didn't remind me of some earlier efforts of another recent(esque) M-I-Crooked Letter artist, Big KRIT. See, before KRIT was talking about how "life ain't nuffin' but an EQ of highs and lows" and working with B.B. King, KRIT was a great artist, no doubt. With his earlier tapes, he built a local fanbase that eventually spilled over to the rest of us with K.R.I.T. Wuz Here. But, he hadn't refined his style; in other words, he still, even with bars that stood out, had a lot of room to grow. He was still in the process of finding his voice.
That's the thing with Vic Rippa's tape, his first full-length release. It's a successful effort, full of an eclectic mix of "party" rap-like tracks ("Goin' Ignorant" and "Crash Landing" are of this train) and tracks such as "No Frauds" that showcase Vic Rippa's desire to talk on the "real shit" hipsters and purists eat up. But, some of the tracks come off as devoid of their own voice. That, and the tape's organization is a bit mood-killing. For instance, "No Frauds" is followed by "Goin' Ignorant," then followed by the final track "Rise and Fall" (a snippet, I hope, of a track where Vic vents on his frustrations about the music industry and the like). Now, these flaws aren't not enough to make me say "oh, fuck this." Definitely not. But, for future tapes, I just hope he continues to grow as an artist so he can keep making strides. We all have issues with sequencing our first release, from what I've seen. Not everyone can produce Illmatic right out the gate. Nor, for real, should they be. Why? Because that's how artists these days get lazy.
This tape, however, would definitely get played in the Speedmobile while cruising, contemplating about getting into something for the night.