Monday, September 14th, 2009

Nicki Minaj ft. Lil Wayne – I Get Crazy

Conclusion from Google Image Search: she really likes sticking her tongue out an awful lot…


Matt Cibula: If you had told me when I was young that the future would sound like this I would have exploded.

Alex Macpherson: Nicki Minaj may or may not go on to fill the Lil’ Kim-sized vacancy for a major league female rapper, but the growing hype around the new Young Money signing is more than justified. She’s sharp, she’s funny, she rattles off did-she-just-say-that lines with a casual brilliance and her Beam Me Up Scotty mixtape sits alongside Pill’s 4180: The Prescription as one of 2009’s finest. “I Get Crazy” doesn’t contain Minaj’s most out-there humour or rewindable lines, and while the “A Milli” knock-off beat bangs as a mixtape intro, it leans too obviously on the “female Wayne” angle as a promotional tactic. What it does showcase, though, is Minaj’s charisma and versatility. Her voice is clipped and precise, which makes it sound like she’s rapping through disapprovingly pursed lips; it means she can be as playful and zany as she wants without ever losing a fundamental contemptuous swagger.

Spencer Ackerman: Oh God, make her shut up. Then out of nowhere: Wayne on guitar, spitting a rock-n-roll-influenced verse that’s both bad and senseless: “I’m fly/I eat my bird shit/ And I’m crazy/ crazy ’bout yurrr bitch.” And still this is more interesting than Nicki Minaj. The recession must not be so bad if she’s able to make music.

Chuck Eddy: Nicki’s “Beam Me Up Scotty” is one of my favorite singles of the year, an easy shoo-in for my year-end top ten, but for some reason I’ve been having the hardest time getting it through my skull that she’s from South Jamaica, Queens rather than the other Jamaica, or even London. Guess it’s just hard to believe that an American girl rapper could still sound so much fun in 2009, since no other ones seem to (well, maybe Kid Sister comes close).

Alex Ostroff: She dabbles in Jamaican patois and barks like a dog, has sex in the Oval Office and padded rooms, and rhymes mangos/bangles/ankles/star-spangled. Why not? The hook is a third-generation A Milli rip (tho). Plus, Wayne shows up just long enough to tell you to eat his birdshit and play an unnecessary guitar solo, holding Nicki back from a [10]. Still, Nicki’s gleeful insanity reminds me far more of what I used to love about Wayne than anything off his forthcoming rock album is likely to.

Martin Skidmore: I like her a lot, and I like the production, but the guest interjection rather mars it.

Anthony Easton: There is something really angular about how they fit together, sharp enough to poke yr eye out.

Al Shipley: I never thought I’d actually like a song where Wayne incompetently paws at a guitar and does his whole rock star schtick. But I have to admit that the way that that little bit of tweedling and feedback precedes one of his most hoarse and unhinged guest verses to date is kind of awesome.

Michaelangelo Matos: I’ll take Weezy’s verse over his shitty guitar solo, if in fact it’s his — why else would they allow it on there? And I’ll take Minaj’s “crazy language” over both. Not to mention her wonderfully forthright proposition of Barack Obama. “Crazy” means “horny,” right?

Jordan Sargent: At first blush you’d think that the beat here, with its mile-a-second jerk-style vocal-sampling, would be the undisputed star, but she more than keeps up admirably, adapting the sly and confident word-slurring flow that Wayne locks into when he’s really gripping a beat. Minaj’s selling point has always been her Lil Kim-esque swagger, and if she keeps making songs as singular as this, she just might be able to pick up where Kim left off.

Doug Robertson: Of course, in real life anyone who goes to great lengths to tell you just how ‘crazy’ they are is usually just an annoying, attention seeking, irritating fool, but in music real world rules don’t apply and, while Nicki is clearly desperate for your attention, she damned well deserves it as well.

John Seroff: 80% of the ‘I Get Money’ hook + negative 44% sub-Janelle Monae rapping + maybe 30 bars of next-level bad preschool lyrics (“I keep three hos but don’t call me Santa”/”I mean my name ring bells like Tinky”) + 1 ridiculously lousy Lil’ Wayne verse + approximately 15 seconds of what I assume to be Wayne’s terrible guitar solo = an inauspicious debut. Nicki has the body and the connections to stick around for a minute; here’s hoping her learning curve isn’t as steep as the one beginning at her lower back.

Mordechai Shinefield: Even with a couple of dated references (how long has she been sitting on that Lewinsky/Sex in the Oval Office one?), Minaj and Lil Wayne sound like they’re having a blast. Lil Wayne is as crazy as he’s ever sounded (even schizo’ing out over his own insanity before going full avian; “I ain’t crazy / No yes I am,” right before, “I’m fly now / Eat my bird shit.”) and Minaj gets the best line when she rhymes “Got some bangles all over my ankles” to “Such a star they say I’m a star spangle,” and then compares herself to Hannah Montana. The differences between her and Hannah Montana could fill a book. For one, Nicki’s a hell of a lot more fun.

Martin Kavka: There will be no convincing people who don’t like this genre of music, who will see this as combining the charmlessness of rap with the headache-inducing capability of hard house. But there’s something to be said for a woman who comes on the scene saying “I am the rap Hannah Montana, fix your antenna.” What does it mean to proclaim yourself a secret character in a genre that has long valued realness? Or is Minaj suggesting that Miley Stewart is less real than Hannah Montana?

13 Responses to “Nicki Minaj ft. Lil Wayne – I Get Crazy”

  1. hi there, you’re all completely insane

  2. Chuck, please find yourself New Era, Pink Dollaz, and the Bangz.

  3. Also, Unladylike and Miss Banks. And Stush, Ms Dynamite and Lady Chann on the UK side.

    I’m pretty sure Nicki Minaj has Jamaican heritage, given her fondness for patois and West Indian references. Also suspect Asian heritage of sorts, though given that her “Nicki Lewinsky” appellation makes no sense, “Harajuku Barbie” might not mean anything either.

    Anyway Nicki Minaj is my girl, and I can just turn into a total quote machine for her. I love her creative wordplay and commitment to quotability, and the fact that she’s raunchy but too surrealist and weird to box herself into just smutty ho-rap. Really versatile, too: she can handle everything from “Beam Me Up Scotty”, which wouldn’t sound out of place in a dancehall mix, to her touchingly vulnerable verse on the “Best I Ever Had” remix (“It’s so amazing…I figured out this world is ours for the taking”). And that rare combination of being super-prolific and reliably, consistently excellent.

  4. The Pink Dollaz and Bangz songs I’ve checked out on youtube were pretty good but didn’t kill me, sad to say — yeah, even the one about boys with tattoos, which does come close, but the Bangz’ icy r&b-singing parts leave me cold compared to their hot rap-jerking parts. (And I had a feeling somebody might mention them.) I’ll check out the others, though; thanx.

    As for Brits, Sway featuring $tush’s “F Ur X” was one of my top ten singles last year, but I don’t know her stuff otherwise (and I liked-not-loved the Ms. Dynamite songs I’ve heard); I’ll investigate further when I have a minute. (Though again, my blurb’s point was that, judging from girl-grime I’ve heard, Brits seem to do this stuff more joyfully in general than Americans these days. But right, I obviously haven’t heard everything.)

  5. Azalea Banks is terrible and I am convinced that the people (Neon Gold) who have been pushing her on the listening public as assiduously as they have been are doing it as some sort of sick practical joke.

    (NB: this would also explain Ellie Goulding, who despite recording a nice cover of “Sleepyhead” and the decent-ish “Starry Eyed” also seems like a nasty little hipster prank)

  6. Forgot about Unladylike, whose album is about 50% awesome Crime Mob-style knuckledowns and 50% boring attempts at branching out.

    I think Lex captures Nicki Minaj’s appeal rather well there.

  7. Unlady Like is the name of a great No Limit album from Mia X. Weird. Anyway, I’ve heard this once, on the radio, loved it. Which surprised me because when Nicki first came out I thought she really sucked. Seems to have massively improved though, she’s great on this, ‘Single Ladies,’ etc.

  8. Yeah, I’ve wondered if Unladylike named themselves after the Mia X album.

  9. Thx Rodney!

    Chuck: Stush’s key track this year is “We Nuh Run”, her vocal of Hard House Banton’s “Sirens”.

    Unladylike’s “Sit Yo Ass Down” is the best introduction to them – I really want to find out who the guests are on the ESTL remix though, the internet is silent on the matter, especially the amazing final dude, “diamonds so big they make Beyoncé look”.

    Re: Miss Banks – any 17-year-old girl who can come up with a line like “I can suck a 10-inch cock drier than a raisin/My brain is amazing” is fine by me.

    Current favourite Minaj moment is in “Itty Bitty Piggy”: “You should buy a 16, cuz I write it good; an 808, WOOF WOOF cuz I write it good; and bitches can’t find they man cuz I ride it good; I’m the wolf, WHERE IS LITTLE RED RIDING HOOOOD!” That last line, with the echo and the shouting, just comes totally out of leftfield and floors me.

  10. Oh yeah, more female rapper recommendations. Also feeling Nina B: her Real Rap Supreme mixtape is pretty good, “In My Own Lane” over Outkast is the standout there. And Cheasleauen’s “Jelly” is terrific fun: don’t know too much about her but she seems more in the hip-pop Kid Sister vein, and that bassline is undeniable.

  11. “Re: Miss Banks – any 17-year-old girl who can come up with a line like “I can suck a 10-inch cock drier than a raisin/My brain is amazing” is fine by me.”

    See, that would seem to me to be a strike against her, particularly being 17 and all. Anyway, I wasn’t aware there was such a big new trend of hipster blogger-touted female rappers.

  12. I don’t think there is, all of the ones cited so far come from disparate scenes and locales, and are pretty varied artists. I guess Kid Sister, Miss Banks and maybe Cheasleauen are the only ones who are really “hipster blogger-touted” types.

    (I absolutely love the new Kid Sister single, btw. HI I’M KID SISTER)


    love u Nicki Minaj!!!! a.k.a “Rap bytchz step ya game up”and u hot ma’

    $*(YUNG MONEY)*$