Pop Shit – [REASON] ft. [Schoolboy Q]

Prior to hearing a few random singles from TDE’s rising star REASON, I had totally been sleeping on him. Not only him, but I was sleeping on a lot of the other under the radar artists at Top Dawg Entertainment that weren’t a part of the Black Hippy supergroup. After realizing how evidently talented he was in many different facets through songs like “Trapped in” featuring Ab-Soul and Boogie as well as “Flick it Up”, also featuring Soulo, I knew I had to wake up and give him a solid shot because I had absolutely no reason not to. I finally tuned into his debut album There You Have it almost two years after its release and it totally blew my expectations out of the water. His artistry and skill are as clear as day and I’m not sure why I expected otherwise considering TDE isn’t going to waste their time on wack rappers. This intrigued me to listen to some of the other members of the label’s extensive roster, and I had the same exact experience with them as I did with REASON. TDE has been proving their dominance time and time again and this year, big things are expected from a majority of the members, including REASON himself.

In order to deliver an additional single for his upcoming project that is going to be called New Beginnings, he dropped off a track featuring Schoolboy Q entitled “Pop Shit”. The production is menacing and lingers in your mind even after listening, as an ominous melody pairs with simplistic drums and percussion that sound as if they’re being played in a wide-open, empty room. This dark, spooky vibe is played up in the hook that is delivered by REASON, due to the fact that his voice is manipulated down to a very low pitch as he repeats the same lines over and over again.

As he goes in for his first verse, the instrumental introduces some high-pitched bells or chimes of some sort. REASON’s voice is unaffected as his demeanor comes off as slightly assertive and persistent. His flow is unique and impressive as he boasts a somewhat stop and go-like delivery that pairs with the beat flawlessly. His energy seems to raise as his verse begins to come to an end, causing a bit of momentum to build up that leads the listener to believe his story and message have reached their peak right before the deep, threatening chorus comes back into the picture. He mentions things throughout his portion of the track like not needing help and doing things on his own, proving his naysayers wrong, and how his competition has absolutely no chance at contending with him when things are all said and done.

The second hook is about twice as long as the first, but Q joins in for the second half of it, adding another layer to the foggy chorus. After hearing how dark the production was, I was positive that Schoolboy’s aggressive and vicious demeanor was sure to come out, but it wasn’t as hostile as I was expecting, in all honesty. Don’t get me wrong, he always has a sort of rasp and grittiness to his bars, but I guess I was just expecting a bit of a different delivery. It’s not a big deal, though, because his cadence is intricate and appealing nonetheless, truly bringing this song to a new place. He begins to get more animated at the end of his verse just like his counterpart did, as he plays with his words in a very interesting fashion. Q ends up mentioning a plethora of violent actions like killing his opposition and dying for his block before finishing up by talking about his influx of money and his luxurious house.

REASON was set up for success even before joining TDE. His skills are unteachable, and he just has such a firm grasp on the style and sound of the music he is trying to make that each and every song comes out perfect every single time. Sure, TDE has helped him truly hone in on his craft and brought him additional resources to help him succeed, as a label should, but at the end of the day, REASON was bound to be heard in one way or another. His stories are vivid and eye-opening, and he just has a manner about his narratives that make you feel like you were there with him during the encounters he speaks about. I can’t wait for New Beginnings to drop at some point this year, but all of these singles are keeping me at peace for the time being. Peep REASON’s most recent singe “Pop Shit” featuring his label-mate Schoolboy Q below.