Your Old Droog may owe his meteoric rise to fame to being confused for Nas early in his career, but on his new EP, Kinison, he further separates himself as a poetically inclined lyricist worthy of accolades all his own.
The 11-track project gets its title from the late stand-up comedian Sam Kinison, who lends his voice to “Intro,” an in-your-face aside to hip-hop, the supposed “sh-t that anybody can do” because the artists don’t play any instruments.
Not only does the opening salvo call to mind Jay Z’s somewhat controversial appearance at Glastonbury, but also sets up the tone for the enigmatic Coney Island rapper’s rock-themed return to the boom-bap ethos.
“It’s not like something we planned,” Droog told Rolling Stone. “I was mentioning a lot of people from the rock world in my rhymes. It was like, ‘Yo, I think I gotta tie this thing around, ‘cause it’s happening too much. Porno for Pyros, it’s like a dope way of saying your shit is fire. It’s kind of like useless trivia, so I’m making use of it. I just got memory for useless shit. I remember Meredith Brooks; I don’t know why.”
The El RTNC-produced “Rage Against The Machine” -- which pays homage to both the politically charged rap-metal band and the “Free Turkey” MC’s genesis as an aspiring artist -- is hardly useless considering its inventive and intricate wordplay.
“Never stood on line for retros, and I only went to college to get hoes/ Didn’t even get the credits I’s supposed to get, my scumbag friends was the only associates/ Word to mutha, as a kid I just wanted that first Rage LP with that dude burning on the cover,” he raps.
Other standout songs include “Get The Paper,” “Gentrify My Hood” and “Sonic Youth,” which was produced by Marco Polo.