Mixtape Review-Insomnia Addict by Starlito
When Stalito drops a project you don’t jam out or bump it you study it like a treasure map. He’s one of maybe five active rap artists who drops treasure maps you have to walk with to find the precious gems in his verses. Kevin Gates appears on his new mixtape Insomnia Addict in interlude form, sampled from an interview where he explains that Lito is his favorite rapper. Gates (who had an amazing year himself) specifies “none of his raps are extravagant and incredible…he didn’t pull up in a million Lamborghinis, it’s not fictitious.” This assessment makes sense. While Gates laces his anxious concern about betrayal into pleasant melody Lito has none of it. He raps in brutally complex run on sentences just as dense in content as internal rhyme scheme and dripping with misery.
Insomnia Addict takes place during the worst part of every rappers day. It travels from midnight to six am when the cheers have died down and the fans are in bed, the club is closed or full of knuckleheads. This is when you find tweets of anxious desperation from even the most important artists; the fans don’t realize how desperately lonely the life of an important musician is. The music bubbles over with anxiety-that perfect mixture of violence and utter dejection. The empty brags like “You think I give a F about a first week sales? B I’m thuggin’ still servin’ and I put that on my dirty ass scale. Smoke till my eyes closed sip till my eyes closed you got to feel me like brail (HoodRich…Freestyle(4:20am)),” show our narrator is zooted with codeine drink and weed stumbling groggily through the poetry of his isolation so sleepy but so unable to sleep.
From the opening track Red…Dot…Music(A Midwinter’s midnightmare) we establish the experience. Lito is on syrup, voices in the background chant to him that it’s the drugs keeping him awake. All the machinations about crooked cops, imprisoned friends, and bad sexual partners seem like small talk leading up to something much larger. He ends the track by saying if you can sleep…good for you cause he can’t.
So many of the best images jump out to you as you re-listen to Insomnia Addict because his delivery is so odd you may not catch it at first. He compares the booth to an altar on the projects most perfect song and gives the meaning of his listening experience word for word “Anxiety overwhelms me nothing settles me…she whispers in my ear gently stop letting it upset me. Devils get up off of me! Devils get up off of me! Just listen to these raps in case you never get to talk to me…everything is not for everybody this is effortless yet thoughtfully composed its from the soul those who know me best would all agree(SOS(5:55am)).” Those who know Starlito best…might be all of us who’ve followed his journey through music because he’s not joking even when he’s joking. An audience that knows the sex joke connoisseur of Step Brothers punch lines and the king of sadness who never seems to be beating the beat up rather letting it pound confessions out of him.
If you think I’m heaping too many compliments on Starlito and his lyricism let me take it a step further. I think he could kill your favorite rapper on a track: Jay, Drake, Kanye, you name them. Along with Killer Mike, Ka, and a few others Starlito is an absolute lyrical force. One that doesn’t exist within the confines of production trends (If you give Lito a faster paced finger snapping beat he will slow the song down by pure will power). Most hip hop fans don’t know him yet but the ones who do are absolutely better off for it.
Stream or download Insomnia Addict below: