“He’s such a strong motherfucker … his willpower was crazy,” Duval said. “So, I couldn’t believe that shit was real. I was hearing from people before it was on the news and then 15 minutes later, that was it. It shell-shocked me.”
Westside Gunn Takes One Last Independent Swing on ‘Supreme Blientele’ Before Heading to the Big Leagues [Interview]
When it comes to independent success in contemporary hip-hop, not many teams have been able to win without pandering to mainstream pressure quite like Griselda — the tight label family consisting of Benny the Butcher and brothers Conway the Machine and Westside Gunn. Existing as a boutique brand, with niche and remarkably consistent releases (which have earned them a cult following), they’ve been able to tour, sell out anything they drop and secure themselves a spot on the Shady Records roster.
Next to perhaps the G-Unit, not many crews have been able to build a buzz like the Buffalo-based Griselda Records — founded by rapper Westside Gunn. What they also have in common with the 50 Cent-helmed foursome is that their unique sound and aura of authenticity earned them a spot on the Shady Records roster, making them among the few Buffalo rap artists to sign a major deal.
It was just last year when Freddie Gibbs — following a year-long legal ordeal — made a triumphant return to the game with his third solo studio album, You Only Live 2wice. Though he’s been teasing Bandana for a while now, which is the follow-up to his critically acclaimed collaboration with Madlib, Pinata, he’s gifted fans with a new project in the interim, Freddie. The 10-song effort delivers an experience that fans of Gangsta Gibbs have come to expect after the last two projects: glimmering gems scattered among a curated blend of believable, high-quality gangsterism.
Giving Nas less than 24 hours to bask in the glory of his Kanye West-produced Nasir release, JAY-Z and wife Beyoncé — collectively known as The Carters — unexpectedly dropped their long-prophesied collaboration project Everything Is Love. With incredible production and plenty of Easter eggs for fans to decode, the project more than lives up to its potential, with enough flame emojis to satisfy hip-hop heads and the Bey-hive alike.
How do you break down an album when almost every line is quotable? In many ways, rapper Westside Gunn and his Griselda roster are the most consistent team in modern (true school) hip-hop. Everything they release is quality. From that perspective, saying Westside Gunn’s newest release stands among his best should be a sign that it’s honestly something special.