Friday, January 31st, 2020

DaBaby – Bop

A “Bop” is a bop…


[Video][Website]
[7.00]

Wayne Weizhen Zhang: I love it when song titles tell me everything I need to know about what the song sounds like. 
[8]

Nortey Dowuona: Nichelle Morgan, in a comment on the “Bop” video said, “DaBaby is like that one kid in class that everyone is cool with.” And she is absolutely right; he has the brash, devil-may-care goofiness the Yout Dem love in their artists, yet raps in a sharp, needlepoint barrage of flows that the older folks and “born in the wrong generation” kids can happily embrace, while both the baddy, fluting beat and DaBaby’s deep, warm smile spread several rays of excitement and exuberance.
[8]

Kylo Nocom: DaBaby continues to be lovably audacious in a song that increases its score tenfold with either the video or the live SNL performance, particularly when interrupted with Jabbawockeez (!!!) shout outs.
[6]

Leonel Manzanares de la Rosa: This piece lives and dies on the strength of JetsonMade’s flute sample flip, but DaBaby rides it with enough confidence to make “Bop” a fitting title. And he’s earning his victory lap. 
[7]

Alfred Soto: He loves his woozy flute samples, and I bet I know why: it allows him to get all Barry White, slavering that vowel-rich baritone in places I don’t expect. He boasts again (and again), revels in erotic cruelty (what else is new), thinks he’s cute doing so (sigh), and knows he’ll get away with it (see Parenthetical #2). 
[7]

Brad Shoup: The mellotron melody is fine — it sounds like runout Beatles to me, maybe it’s Final Fantasy to someone else — but the important thing is he’s funny: cautious when you’d expect him to go nuts, loaded with deadpan ad-libs. He chops and crushes phrases with abandon. (Why isn’t everyone saying legitly?) If you like it I love it, no biggie.
[8]

Tobi Tella: The flute gives it novelty, DaBaby’s charisma keeps it engaging. It’s not great, but damn if it isn’t fun.
[6]

Jacob Sujin Kuppermann: A different approach to trap flute than most — instead of using the melody as a jumping-off point for his own, or as a vaguely exotic flourish, DaBaby sees it as a distraction to be pushed through. It is possible to note that this is what DaBaby sees all things as. It works, because his tracks always work on some fundamental level, but you begin to worry about diminishing returns.
[6]

Julian Axelrod: When it first debuted as part of the brick that is KIRK at the tail end of last year, “Bop” didn’t seem like it would become the defining DaBaby song. It was never underwhelming, but at first glance it seemed like more of the same from Charlotte’s prodigal son. But here we are in January 2020, and it follows DaBaby everywhere: late night appearances, FaceTime concerts, and probably more than a few frat parties. The impressively elaborate video is a big part of it, but “Bop” is the perfect encapsulation of DaBaby because it sounds as chaotic and enthralling as the video looks. His voice fills every inch of available space, with his ad-libs meshing into a bastardized barbershop quartet. He’s the rap game Bugs Bunny, a beguiling rascal who both exists within the scene and stands outside of it. (On that note, “I’m unorthodox than a motherfucker/Ay, when you gon’ switch the flow? I thought you’d never ask” is the best self-reflexive rap line since “Feelin’ Myself.”) It’s the perfect calling card for a rapper who already has at least ten. The only reason I’m not rating it higher? This isn’t even the best he can do.
[7]

Reader average: [4.5] (2 votes)

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