Artist: Westside Gunn
Album: Pray For Paris
Fav Tracks: “George Bondo”, “327”, “Euro Step”, “Allah Sent Me”, “$500 Ounces”, “Shawn vs. Flair”.
Least Fav Tracks: “Versace” “French Toast” (if I had to pick).
Coming off a dominant 2019 as a solo act and as a collective, Griselda and Westside Gunn once again show why they are the best in the game with his Virgil Abloh designed album “Pray For Paris”.
For me Westside Gunn’s 2018 album “Supreme Blientele” is a modern day Boom Bap/Mafioso East Coast rap classic, ushering in the revival of the long but not forgotten sub genre once dominated by Raekwon and Ghostface Killah. The gritty boom bap production and lyrics about lavish gangster lifestyle with wrestling references sprinkled in is what Hip Hop has been missing for along time, especially in the modern era.
Along with other Griselda members Conway The Machine and Benny The Butcher, the crew has been able to pretty much dominate the rap landscape with always dope if not classic albums from all members including their debut group album “WWCD” from last year.
On “Pray For Paris” Westside gives you the same formula that has worked on past projects, dope bars over grimy NY production. I feel his addition on a few new features and more main stream sounding production by Camoflauge Monk show Westside’s growth. “327” featuring Joey Bada$$ and Tyler The Creator and “French Toast” featuring Wale both show that Westside could have cross over appeal.
With that being said if your a Griselda fan your coming for the bars which can be definitely found on standout tracks “George Bondo” and the Daringer produced “Allah Sent Me” both being my two favorite tracks of the year so far with almost every Benny line being a quotable. To give this album a little more heft, Dj Premier and The Alchemist also have a few tracks on the album with a personal favorite of mine being The Alchemist produced “$500 Ounces” featuring two of my other top 5 in the game rappers Freddie Gibbs and Roc Marciano. “Euro Step” gives off a Madlib style feel sounding like one of the tracks from “Flygod Is An Awesome God”
There are pretty much no duds on this album, as of now it is my favorite project of 2020. No one in Hip Hop is touching Griselda and Westside proves that again on what could be another classic album.