Final thoughts on the new mixtape from two of South Florida’s finest.
Don’t you love reading an over-opinionated, unreasonable review of an album a day after it’s released? Me neither. An album takes months of time for an artist to create, so why should we try to review it after digesting it for merely a few days? It’s impossible to properly review a full-length project with only a handful listens to the work, so here are my thoughts One Week Later on the new Pouya x Fat Nick mixtape (prod. by Flexatelli), Drop Out of School.
Pouya and Fat Nick’s Drop Out of School sounds like a beam of teenage angst mixed with a dash of harsh realities. The Miami Killian Senior High School dropouts proved to have an undeniable sense of natural chemistry on a number of previously-released collaborative efforts, and now return with super-producer Flexatelli to deliver a fat stack of 10 tracks to appease your 808-fiending eardrums.
Shortly after moving into the Trapzilla house in Los Angeles nearly four months ago, producer FLEXATELLI met Fat Nick and Pouya, sparking the creation of Perfect. Following this session, the trio set a goal of making a five-song EP solely amongst themselves. Thanks to an unparalleled workflow, the three artists were able to cut 11 brand new in the span of two weeks, far surpassing their original goals.
Drop Out of School is the perfect balance of head-banging, neck-throbbing instrumentals and a conscious stream of cluttered thought. With an evident amount of artistic growth from both Pouya and Nick, the concepts toyed with throughout the project are representative of pure and honest emotions felt by the respective rappers. By highlighting the struggles of a diploma-less musician, the listener is given a glance into the stressful and often restless life of a full-time creative.
Pouya and Fat Nick’s interplay is polished on this tape, evident from the first track on which the dropouts trade bars and compliment each others’ lyrical rhythmic patterns beautifully. Pouya uses the introductory track to establish a theme of uncertainty, rapping “Do we want money, pussy, power? We cannot decide” on Undecided‘s memorable hook. Singles Boom, Torch and Middle of the Mall all display elements that can be found in the production and lyrical content of the duo’s most commercially successful releases. Addictive 808’s and distinct flows have become signatures for the Miami-bred emcees, both of whom drop a pair of their hardest verses to date on Torch. The sinister track proves to be one of the tape’s strongest efforts with Pouya burying yet another lyrical gem in the grimy hook with “Pull up to the show, they hear my voice, the crowd rejoice. I’m a god baby, praise me, kiss my feet, get on your fours.”
Despite the number of large highlights experienced throughout the mixtape, Pouya and Fat Nick both shine brightest on the title track. Nick recites a hardly-understandable yet fully comprehensible hook, while Pouyalilpou absolutely snaps and drops one of the strongest verses of his career. The 22 year-old lays down bars far beyond his years, rapping “Take a gamble with life, a young drop-out. Momma told me I was never gonna make it, now I got a hundred women tryna get me naked. 911 Swerving in the I-95, I’m going too fast, I’m losing my mind, I guess I’m ahead of my time.” The flawless execution continues into the superb Save Me, providing a slight break from the highly energetic mood of the previous tracks.
Middle of the Mall was the sturdy base upon which Drop Out of School was built, released as the project’s first single over two months ago. Standing at #6 on the track list, MOTM allows for a slight change in dynamics while bringing a trademark feel of aggression, likely inspired by the lethal instrumental. While taunting non-believers on Remember Us?, Pouya and Fat Nick put a definitive pulse on the 10-track offering while keeping the content diverse enough to attract listeners from all corners of the musical world.
Sonically, Drop Out of School is an absolute masterpiece. Thanks to Flexatelli, Fat Nick and Pouya were laced with a collection of remarkably fire instrumentals to lay the groundwork for their mixtape. A combination of fat 808’s, progressive drum patterns and clever arrangements led to an incredibly impressive set of production. Every beat on this tape blends seamlessly with the next, while simultaneously each keeping a distinct tone and character. Tonal shifts found within Flex’s blueprint provide for an interesting array of sounds and catapult the young producer to the forefront of his lane.
Unprecedented production and outstanding artistry combine to create one of 2017’s most jaw-dropping, exhilarating projects. Click play below to stream Drop Out of School.