Thursday, August 13th, 2015

Tkay Maidza – M.O.B.

A Jukebox favorite returns, remains so…


Cédric Le Merrer: If D.R.A.M. is playing Mario World, this is the first Sonic game, all whirlwind speed and flash. If you’re not 100% sure of the way to go to get every last golden ring, don’t worry, just speed confidently forward and you’ll most likely end up against Robotnik. Tkay Mazda is still a young upstart with some beginners’ fault, but she always compensates by being quick and fun.

David Sheffieck: I’ve yet to hear a Tkay Maidza song that doesn’t knock me out; it’s like she’s revealing a new layer to her talent and her style with each track. This finds her trading off sky-high coo and machine-gun flow, maintaining her cool and charisma through both. Maidza still needs to find a beat that can detonate as powerfully as “U-Huh” – something that can match her – but until she does, her delivery is more than enough to elevate solid production into something fantastic.

Thomas Inskeep: It’s crazy that Maidza’s only 19, because she’s already showing off crazy levels of talents. But it’s not crazy in that she sounds like the future — remember what Azealia Banks sounded like four years ago (when she was 20), how fresh and unexpected? Elk’s electro-rap production is superb, but the focus is on the star, her flow and even more swag.

Alfred Soto: The torrent captured around the two-minute mark is the most prodigious rapping I’ve heard all year, compensating for the okay synth glaze but complementing the super stop-start rhythm. I didn’t review “U-Huh” last year. Here’s compensation.

Nina Lea Oishi: The chorus reads like it’s been rather awkwardly translated from a foreign language (“We are diamonds cause you are one”) and sounds like it’s been ripped from a less-worthy EDM song. Still, Maidza’s flow — clattering and stuttering and punchy — meshes well with the noisy, exuberant production. “M.O.B.” is far less compelling than 2014’s killer “U-Huh,” but still retains the latter’s youth and joy.

Iain Mew: Tkay’s acceleration bursts are exhilarating when they do come, but “M.O.B.” is more than ever about her flexibility to make the track work rather than her alone. It takes the sharpest high points of a bunch of sparklier dance-pop records (Zedd most obviously) and turns them into a song where she rides that same high continuously, a neon rail running to the horizon.

Brad Shoup: “This song’s about cash/But I’m not ’bout the money/I do it cause I don’t feel like feeling funny” — I didn’t think we’d get a new take on this rhyme pair, but here it is. The triggered buzz definitely sets off that weird vibe. That part makes it dreamy, the claps make it hectic, but it’s still a love song to capital with an allusion to “Catch Me I’m Falling,” and that’s great.

Will Adams: Tkay Maidza’s greatest strength is her ability to stand out among her dense, dazzling soundscapes. There’s that, and then there’s adding a trance chorus and a hell of a hook.

Crystal Leww: Switch Tape was one of my favorite releases last year, mostly because it is impossible to contain Tkay Maidza. Her rapid fire raps, her sickly sweet melodies, and her undeniable youthful swagger are impossible to replicate. Coupled with a fantastic beat selection that leans into electronic music that no one else is really exploring to its fullest, Maidza has something completely unique going for her. I truly hope no one tells her what to do to become “more famous” or “more popular,” but given the money over broke bitches attitude she’s got going here, I think she’ll be fine.

Reader average: [7] (3 votes)

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