Mixtape Review-Air Time by Mouse On Tha Track
Some people can’t help but be fun. It’s in their bones. In my generation we all looked at Billy Joe Armstrong from Green Day and snickered. It seemed like he just couldn’t stop making fun bankable pop music no matter what he tried to do. He was called a sell out by the “real” punks but as time moved on to The American Idiot years more of the old heads realized this is just who Billy is.
Air Time isn’t an exercise in emulating the Cash Money spirit. It’s produced like Millionaire Dreamzzz before it as if Mouse On Tha Track exists on that roster in the late nineties making his own music. The opening track is less about ridding yourself of old relationships than about feeling great after a haircut-Liberation(The Cut). Within the first 45 seconds of Haters Don’t Like That he’s already said “You can come up out that mud just like a 4 wheel drive” warned that on the come up you will have to leave friends behind and recommended strongly its best to pay your taxes.
Mouse is a genius. He’s one of the only living descendants of the Juvenile every bar should feel like a chorus methodology. While he is definitely focused on his grind the pestering annoyances of life are poking at him in a way he just can’t ignore. Because the sway of how he says it you might miss lines like “Everywhere I look there’s a crook and a vulture with a m$#%*% problem to offer (Never Slow My Roll).” It seems like the world raises its frustration level to challenge him and in turn he raises the power of his catchy New Orleans bounce to overcome it and get back in the right state of mind.
The best collaborations on this project are hands down the two tracks with Kevin Gates (Don’t Make’em Like Me and Sex Drugs and Money). Both do a brilliant job of taking personal stories of adversity and mixing them into songs. Gates and Mouse are great at giving songs real themes and differentiating them from one another. Far too many artists are stuck creating the same song over and over again. All the songs are about the same thing and run together in a mushy mess. That will never happen to these two they have a real sharp sense of how they are supposed to sound.
You could disregard lyrics and subtext and still enjoy Air Time. Even if you didn’t find fascination in watching one of the most fun and entertaining rappers in the game do a song like Bye Bitch(which bleeds undiscussed anger). You could just listen to this mixtape and bounce with the beats and hooks followed by hooks. I love how genuinely disturbed he sounds on Air Time it feels like watching The Dude lose it throughout the course of The Big Lebowksi. He always centers himself and maybe the beginning, the new haircut, is really the end. He goes through all the BS of bad relationships and people nipping at him for this and that and cuts the locks to start over. So its about feeling fresh again and what your ridding yourself of.
Stream or download Air Time below: