Earlier this year, Yoh recapped Frank Ocean’s brief history as a master rapper, which began with his show-stealing verse on Odd Future’s 2012 posse cut “Oldie” and continued on Blonde tracks like “Nights” and “Futura Free.” Since then, Frank’s endless ouput (pardon the pun) has only solidified his status as one of the best rappers in the game right now.
During a surprise episode of blonded RADIO earlier this morning, Frank kept the new music coming with the premiere of A$AP Rocky’s “RAF,” a Dun-Deal produced ode to Raf Simons threads (which they would really, really like it if you didn't touch)—and yep, he got two versions.
Both cuts feature verses from Rocky, Frank, Lil Uzi Vert and Quavo—plus Playboi Carti on ad-lib duty—but the big difference between the two are Frank’s verses. On the first version, Frank out-flexes three of the most boastful rappers around: Rocky flies first class and Uzi puts his side bitch in Marc Jacobs, but Frank eats ravioli at the Obama's and doesn’t let “no middleman cut in my blessings.” His deadpan delivery puts the “humble” in “humble brag.”
On the second—and significantly higher quality—version of “RAF,” Frank not only lets his vocals soar, but switches up his flow throughout his verse; just when you think he’s sliding into pocket, he’ll leap out of it with a long pause (“Raf dragging on the…. floor, bitch”) or ad-libs (“That Spring/Summer 2002 [two, two, two… yeah]”).
Perhaps the best thing about Frank Ocean being on A$AP Rocky’s “RAF,” though, is when he raps, “Sleep Pendergrass, Teddy / Sleep with the Teddy / Quick with the hands, ready,” punctuated by the sound of a gun cocking. It’s like Young Jeezy's "Gangsta Music" meets Frank's rap verse on Earl Sweatshirt’s “Sunday,” in which he reminded Chris Brown that he's not anal when it comes to blowing his brains out. Same goes for anyone who dares touch his Raf.
If 2016 was the year he poured his heart out, 2017 is about Frank Ocean rapping his ass off. Hopefully there's more where this came from.