Mumble Rap 2

Mumble Rap 2

Back in 2017, haters applied the term “mumble rap” to any number of popular artists whose vocal styles didn’t jibe with hip-hop’s presumed lyrical orthodoxy. So it was a bold move on Belly’s part that year to use that name for a project of his own, especially given his proximity to some artists who’d been branded with the pejorative. Of course, the Canadian rapper subverted that title with a bars-centric outing that aligned with his mic prowess from even before he’d been The Weeknd’s songwriting go-to guy. Some six years later, this sequel turns that statement into a series, doubling down on the dope verses with cuts like “Ambiance” and the resilient “World Changed.” After a short introductory sample by the great performance poet Gil Scott-Heron, Belly advocates on his own behalf with “Loyalty v. Royalty.” Elsewhere, guests Gucci Mane and Rick Ross bring their adult predilections and mature sensibilities to the sexual provocations of “De La Hoya” and “Cocaine Spoon,” while longtime cohort NAV extols the virtues of a kindred spirit on “Just Like Me.”

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