There is simply too much music and not enough hours.
Attempting to cover every notable and great album is difficult enough, but reviewing every notable and great song is simply impossible.
Instead of a futile attempt at covering everything, then, we’ve come up with the DJBooth Report Card: a simple, daily review of five recently-released records, using an A (incredible) to F (make it stop) letter grade system.
Along with a grade, each song will be accompanied by a brief sentence or two. Report Card isn't meant to be a deep dive nor profound analysis, but a daily appetizer for music scavengers seeking great recommendations and the newest, most notable songs to either bump or avoid.
Westside Gunn & MF DOOM — "Gorilla Monsoon"
My fellow DJBooth scribe CineMasai labeled “Gorilla Monsoon”'s production as the smell of sewer water, a perfect illustration of the unpleasant filth that drips from the song's soul. It is the perfect home for the grim adventures of Westside Gunn & MF DOOM. The two heavyweights prove why they are the brass knuckle duo underground hip-hop needs. (B)
TOBi — "All Day"
The thrill of TOBi’s “All Day” is its quiet buildup, from the very start the song transforms before your very ears. It’s rising action is layered, leading up to a climax of colors when the beat drops. TOBi’s voice is glass-table smooth, yet it’s not overwhelmed by the swirling sounds that envelop his every word. Issa vibe. (B)
Masta Killa — "Down With Me" ft. Sean Price
God bless the soul of Sean Price. This posthumous offering is like hearing a rapper spit an entire verse with a razor under his tongue, but really, that’s all P verses. He's a butterfly with a rocket launcher over this 9th Wonder slapper, and that’s not to discredit Masta Killa, who pokes a hole in the beat with a samurai sword. It’s a throwback to days forgotten, the kind of raps that wouldn’t make a playlist but are a pleasant nod to the past. (B)
Lil Durk — "Make It Out"
With drugs in his system and a mind weighed down with a stream of memories, Lil Durk vents in an Auto-Tune tone that’s reminiscent of when Young Thug sounded more like Lil Wayne than an Atlanta alien. A line like “I was dressing my homies up for their funerals” is the kind of chilling transparency only true street rappers can give. Where Durk falls short is overdoing it with his voice, playing with his delivery doesn’t always allow the heaviness to carry the weight of an anvil on such a serious subject. Rappers have to know when a raw subject needs an equally as raw delivery. (C+)
Allan Rayman — "Word of Mouth"
Allan Rayman has a voice that’s soothing yet rough, delicate but blanketed in pain. It sounds good against the bleeding guitar strings that vibrate around each note and the buildup is nice—especially the closing solo—but I wanted more from Allan. He’s singing with emotion, there’s feeling, but it doesn't lunge into the soul. (C+)
By Yoh, aka YohDOOM, aka @Yoh31