By Jack Barnes
With a metronomic flow and a keen eye for detail, Maxo Kream is one of the most promising and original emcees bubbling under the surface of the mainstream. Returning to the scene with his second single of 2017, Maxo reveals the true extent of his hustling prowess on “5200.” Rhyming over ethereal vocal samples evocative of the production of Clams Casino, Friendzone and other luminaries of the Cloud Rap movement, Maxo ably fills the tracks negative space with his inventive rhymes, counting off his numerous methods for earning paper. Enjoy this audio stream below after the jump.
Creatively placing his words between the snapping snares, Maxo flexes his rap muscles over the angelic canvas with his ever-changing flows: “Switch the mojo/Work my move/Regardless, I’ll sell everything/Trap like Wal-Mart/Don’t you try to Target/Keep a Supa K.” “5200” is a worthy follow-up to “Grannies,” Maxo’s startlingly personal previous release, which has grown into Maxo’s biggest hit yet, earning over 3 million plays on Spotify and spending several weeks on the Most Necessary playlist.
After breaking out in 2015 with the critically acclaimed Maxo 187, Maxo Kream elevated his artistry with The Persona Tape, released in June 2016. Featuring appearances from fellow Houston rapper Paul Walland rising Atlanta rappers Playboi Carti, Key!, and Rich the Kid, the tape finds Maxo Kream exploring the intricacies of his public profile and how he is perceived. “Your persona is how you carry yourself,” said Maxo Kream to Complex. “It tells people everything about who you are, so it’s more important than a social security number. This tape is everything I’m about. Persona shit.” Featuring tracks such as the grime-tinged “Big Worm,” which earned co-signs from Skepta and Wiley, and garnered nearly 1.7 million SoundCloud plays in the process, and video singles such as “G3” and “Smoke Break,” The Persona Tapewas one of the most celebrated rap releases of the year. Also in 2016, Maxo toured the nation with Danny Brown, and provided a guest verse to “Running Man,” the first Cool Kids track since 2011. Maxo will make further strides in 2017, refining his aesthetic, perfecting his bars, and winning new fans in the process.
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