Artist Mixtape Review- Yung Trap "7.14.12 The Mixtape"

Yung Trap
Rating: 9 out of 10

What’s amazing about talent… and I’m not referring to the sort of talent that only a mother would love… but rather that 100% UNDENIABLE talent, that’s something that’s simply inescapable. When someone is truly gifted it reaches up and just grabs a hold on your thoughts…

In the case of the now, 21 yr old Duval native Yung Trap, he does exactly that. I’ve been a quiet fan of Trap since the 7-14-10 Mixtape; and the entire Back Door Music camp (shout out to Pretty Ricky and Grand Prix) has done an exceptional job of not just building their brand, but affording Trap the ability to grow as an artist. Starting out as a true club hitter in 2010, on the newest mixtape 7-14-12 , Trap is doing something that few artists in Jacksonville have been capable of doing…  he is serving the community an array of musical sounds and lyricism (yes, Trap is becoming a truly great conjurer of literary creativity on the mic) and the masses are accepting it. I can’t say for sure if it’s just that the market has evolved or if the growing popularity of acts like Kendrick Lamar, Diggy, and others  on a national level has made who Trap is in his entirety, more locally acceptable to everyone from the ladies, to the college kids, and the thugs. But whatever it is, it’s working.  So much so that even DJ Q45 has decided to join in this go round.

Starting off his newest offering with great pomp and circumstance with a track entitled “Best In The City 3,” Trap and his producer paint a visual that makes you feel that this isn’t just the guy who went to Terry Parker High a few years ago, but rather an artist of the highest order. I could close my eyes and visualize Trap on stage colorful and engaging, sitting on his thrown while a slew of women laid at his feet as he spit the following:

“What’s the odds of me being here
Ray Charles in the VIP I ain’t seeing clear
The love of my life, think I see in here
But if I hit tonight, I’mma leave her here
Damn I’m faded
Thank God we made it
Cuz a nigga just got rob
They fired me from my job
Damn, Mickey D’s racist
Now it’s back to the basics
Air Force one’s dirty laces
I was Martin Luther King
All I had was a dream
Till I decided to chase it”

Now before you Dead President, Slaughter House, Kanye West fans go H.A.M., let me explain what I see in Trap’s lyrics. No, Trap doesn’t engage you with a dense array of metaphorical lines… but he doesn’t need to. There’s a collection of things that makes a lyricist great. Dr. Dre wasn’t an amazing lyrical talent, but when he spit, he engaged us with tone and what he said was painting a clear picture in the mind of the listener. Trap has grown from 7-14-10 and now possesses an increased story telling ability. In this introduction, you can hear how Traps voice and life is evolving.

Trap also doesn’t cease to entertain the inner fan in me by having CEO (who I’m on record saying is one of the most talented MCs in Jacksonville ) bless the mixtape on the track “My Bad.” One thing that becomes very clear on this mixtape, which is different from the last two, is that Trap and his team have made a conscious decision to show an expansion in the track selection. This mixtape reaches a much broader audience with tracks like “Young & Dumb” which SCREAMS for a verse from Drake, but Trap does an exceptional job of commanding the song on his own. Making a balanced use of autotune, Trap creates what I view as a potential jewel (and cross over hit) to the mixtape.

For me, the culmination of the mixtape is the State Farm Commercial/Journey inspired track “All Night,” where Trap fuses who he is in with a track you simply wouldn’t expect.  “Come Around,” “Peach Circoc,” and “Beast Mode” are all very welcomed tracks that continue to showcase Trap’s voice and flow, which are his strongest assets.  “I Understand” will hit close home to Duval natives… male and female who know how life in Da Ville can make and break you… and Trap shows great maturity in his ability to paint that picture.

There’s so many things right about this mixtape, so much so tracks like “Victory Dance” and “Tally Girl” (which aren’t bad, but perhaps are a year late in making their way onto a Yung Trap mixtape) are tolerable despite the fact that you might wonder why they were necessary. You’ll laugh at the Bad Mouth Shawtyz and Teddy P, find yourself saying “DAMN RIGHT!” when Q45 and Pretty Ricky talk shit on the interludes and you listen to the tape over and over and find a new favorite track to listen to.

Back Door Music has a true talent of immense proportions on their hands and I commend their ability to keep their hits from previous tapes by Trap relevant and fresh (a remastered version of “She Thick” and “Top Of The Line”) while introducing new music (because a old record isn’t old when only one region is familiar with it). Trap has grown into the pinnacle artist that other artists in Jacksonville will certainly be looking to model themselves after… but until someone else shows up to challenge him in all facets, I expect (and look forward to) hearing more mixtapes telling the tales of the young man who is quite frankly, “the Best In The City.”