MIXTAPE REVIEW: PHILLY BLOCKS—KAPO MUSIK 2
Written By: Wisdom
What we have here is 5.6.3. Entertainment Presents Philly Blocks: Kapo Musik 2. The Louisville slugger comes out swinging on this Southern meets East Coast offering. Using the tried and true formula that is permeating speakers throughout urban jungles, Philly Blocks is intent on making a name for himself in the crowded rap arena. Fourteen cuts (including an intro) touch on various topics familiar to listeners of Trap/Southern Rap. After the obligatory “Intro”, Philly Blocks starts off strong with “My Thoughts”. This is the most powerful cut on Kapo Musik 2, as it allows Blocks to wax poetic over a soulful sample. With lyrical skill, he paints vivid pictures for listeners to understand where his mind is throughout this mixtape. “Inner city blues like Marvin Gaye” is one of the poignant gems that Philly Blocks drops on this song. “Limits” is another tune that captures the attention of eardrums, with an infectious backdrop serving as the foundation for lyrics laced with venom. The themes are nothing new: drugs, jail, street life. Philly Blocks manages to spit lyrics without sounding pretentious or fake. His reality mirrors the the lives of those that are drawn into his musical world. “Lord Have Mercy” is his thug prayer, showing Dipset influences thoughtout. This is the cut that has Philly Blocks showing that spiritual side, even if it is draped in urban, street lingo. You can tell that the Kentucky thoroughbred pours his soul into his music through liquid lyrics.
Truth be told, he is not Kendrick Lamar or Lupe Fiasco when it comes to lyrical dexterity or complexity, but he doesn’t profess to be in that mold. What you are getting is a true to HIS heart artist that is using rap as a tool to spit about the ills in society. These images may not be pretty, but they are indeed real. “Celebration” touches on this, as Philly Blocks talks about friends and comrades in the struggle for survival. Typical tales of street existence and getting rich are littered through this celebratory song. The next two selections give props to UGK legend Pimp C. “Pimp C (Skit)” and “Pimp C Of My City”are both nods to Chad Butler, who put Port Arthur, Texas on the map (alongside his rhyming cohort Bun B). You get the notion with these two additions to Kapo Musik 2 that Philly Blocks has been a true fan since the days of Ridin’ Dirty (check the UGK discography). “Pimp C Of My City” brings the listener into that Texas state of mind. Keeping with that Texas theme, we have the next offering, “Kali Texas” (featuring Lock From Da Block). “Smokin’ on that Cali (Kali), sippin’ on that Texas” is the mantra for this Philly Blocks/chopped and screwed-like mixtape cut. The slow, methodical track is the appropriate backdrop for the syrup-laced track. Giving those within earshot a more melodic cut for the feminine persuasion, “Love Me Or Leave Me” is an ambient selection. The atmospheric track provides just enough space for Philly Blocks to spit 21st century game at the ladies. He gives us just another glimpse into his multi-faceted thug persona. “Moving”, the tenth track on Kapo Musik 2, starts with audio from voicemail messages setting the stage for Philly Blocks to use a double-time flow. This flow is another weapon in the arsenal for making power moves and stacking chips.
The most auspicious title on Kapo Musik 2 is “Iran Contra” (featuring Bankroll Chaser and Big Q). The psuedo-political title makes way for Blocks, Chaser and Q to compare the large-scale drug wars during the Reagan era with the happenings on many urban streets today. The concept is a dope one, even if not executed at a high degree. Another ode to money-making on this mixtape is “Road To Riches”. Topics ranging from fed time, commissaries, and gone but not forgotten street soldiers is filtered through “Road To Riches”. It’s a dirty tale, to say the least, but also an inspirational one. You can feel, yet again, Philly Blocks taking listeners on a tour through every hood and ghetto in America. “Celebration (Remix)”, featuring Lil Daddy O and Jamarcus, covers familiar territory over a nice track. This remix of Track 5 has each artist bringing their vision to the masses, saluting those still in the struggle, in the system, in the trap (whatever that proverbial trap may be). The last selection on Kapo Musik 2, “It’s Going Down” (featuring Bandman), gives you that Hotlanta bounce and feel reminiscent of Young Dro a few years ago. The title is self-explanatory, as both rhymers detail what’s really going on in Trap USA.
Kapo Musik 2 doesn’t break any new ground lyrically or thematically. It’s the same, or very similar, story of young Black males circumventing, navigating, and transversing a system not designed for his success. Philly Blocks adds his own unique seasonings to his Kentucky-fried saga, giving those listening to Kapo Musik 2 more food for thought. With 5.6.3. Entertainment backing their flagship artist, you should be seeing and hearing more from this artist in the future.