Mixtape Review: Xcel – “Jackin 4 Beats” [Brockton, MA]

Yeah, I’m putting in some OT tonight, courtesy of the red Solo cup experience and good music. When I say “good music”, I mean “I actually muted the Celtics/Knicks game”. So there’s that, but here’s what it’s all about right now – Brocktonian/Brocktonite (I needa ask Rhym for clarification), Xcel just dropped his newest addition to my music collection, entitled “Jackin 4 Beats”. It’s exactly that. The selection of beats he broke off on were semi-diverse, yet impressive:

  • Rick Ross and Aubrey Graham – “Stay Scheming”
  • Kanye – “Theraflu”
  • Meek Mill – “I’m a Boss”
  • Nas – “Nasty”

That’s standard industry fare for the moment, but for what it’s worth, he consistently put faces in the dirt. Certain shit is magnetizing about hip-hop; the bending of syllables; 8 bar rhyme schemes without a hint of struggle in the flow; clever, ingenius shit. Even over beats I’ve heard a hundred times, I listened all the way thru on each track. Good shit thru the first quarter.

Next, the kid brings in a beat that, in my humbly cocky (yup) opinion, should be reserved for God MCs ONLY or for the newly found holographic reincarnations of legends past. Xcel found a way to deftly maneuver over Big L’s “Size Em Up” track and it actually sounded good. The fact he had the audacity goes to say something about his tenacity and confidence. Objectively, he could possibly be a little too sharp for listeners, occasionally over verbalizing bars for the sake of showing out.

It’s a good collection of tracks he put together and he goes in hard and heavy [II] on just about every single outing. What’s really ill about the kid is that he sounds like the beats were tailored for him. Certain tracks, he rocks the beat smoother than the original artists. There’s a certain self-centric MC that embodies a track like it was coming outta his pocket for each beat. Levels on a few tracks drown out a small section of verses, but all in all, the quality’s there.

Replay value’s there in you find yourself in a lyrical, reflective, purist type of hip-hop mood. One thing that’s painfully evident in verses and voice – he’s hungry. Wolf with the lips curled back, fangs out, ready to pounce type of hunger that’s admirable and what SHOULD be expected in an artist. Marketability status is tough – he’s a hardbody lyricist. It’s far, leaps away from the swag rap that’s burning up blogs and mainstream nowadays. There’s a lotta competition in the City of Champions. From what I can tell, he’s one of the better dudes on a lyrical level than others in the city.

Gas or Pass Rating: 4/5

Kid’s a talent, reminds me a little of Saigon. Small fish in the big pond of Brockton, but he could be gaining ground on some of the dudes out there if he keeps making the right connections and showing out like he did with this tape.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s