I will go out on a limb and say this is one of the top hip hop singles of 2013. No commercialization, no autotuned R&B singer on the hook, no materialistic braggadocio, no poppy Euro-trance dance beat. Just strictly hip hop. And I love it.
Listening to the instrumental got my face all scrunched up like EEEYEUCHH! It goes hard! Produced by Kanye West and Nottz, the beat doesn’t detract from the rappers, letting them both ride the beat and take control of the track. One of the samples should immediately remind you Jay-Z’s Death Of Autotune, which was produced by one of Kanye’s mentors No I.D. See me in a game of Six Degrees of Separation when it comes to hip hop! Anyway…
20 plus years of selling Johnson & Johnson
I started out as a baby face monster
No wonder there’s diaper rash on my conscience
My teething ring was numbed by the nonsense
Pusha T, I don’t know how many different ways you can flip the same subject of coke rap, but you have done it your entire career with success. I love how each line in his verse references the previous line, never steering away from the theme.
Quantum physics could never show you the world I was in
When I was ten, back when nine ounces have got you ten
And nine times out of ten n****s don’t pay attention
And when there’s tension in the air nines come with extensions
Then, Kendrick comes in, and yesssss! One major reason why I love it when he rhymes is how he uses inflection in his voice. While in the first verse, Pusha T speaks on a first-person perspective of drug dealing, K-Dot shares the story of his drug addict father and his secondhand experience of growing up in the 80s, a common topic rapped about on his mixtape, Section.80.
TL;DR – This joint bangs.