Tens into Benjamins – [Matt Ox] ft. [Na’Kel Smith]

In complete honesty, I haven’t always been the biggest fan of Matt Ox, but I guess I’ve always respected the moves he has made to blow up in the underground rap scene. Since his early days making music after barely becoming a teenager, I have tuned in slightly more often and I definitely have heard him make hits, so I can’t deny him that whatsoever. I typically listen up when he hops on a track with another artist I’m a fan of, and that’s when I see all of his different styles come out of the woodwork.

Most recently, although I was a few days late to the party, he teamed up with my favorite skateboarding rapper Na’Kel Smith to drop an absolute heater along with a music video to accompany it directed by none other than Lonewolf. The instrumental for “Tens into Benjamins”, which is produced by McCoy, includes rapidly chattering percussion, hard-hitting yet somewhat composed drums, and a mysterious, tiptoeing melody that is simple but provides a nice base for the two artists to truly unleash their personalities. Before the beat drops, Matt’s voice is filtered as he gives us a bit of a preview of what’s to come by providing listeners with about four bars that lead us right into the song.

There’s no true chorus but there are a few reoccurring lines to begin and end the song with, and Matt’s opening and closing verses are more concise than Na’K’s singular portion, acting sort of like bookends to his part. Matt’s disposition is hostile and belligerent as he yells his lyrics in his trademark scratchy voice, to begin with. He switches this up throughout his two parts, sometimes lowing his vocal pitch while other moments he lowers his volume to almost a whisper. Na’K was a perfect choice for this song because he has been known to bring the energy and he doesn’t even slightly disappoint with his verse. His voice is gritty and loud, but his lyrics still come through unphased as he talks about some very important topics within his heart such as certain family members passing away, but he realized he was still too focused on money to truly mourn. Matt, on the other hand, shares the fact that he has been a trendsetter for years and how he just continues to accumulate mass amounts of money while attacking his haters by basically calling them broke.

For those of you who are familiar with Lonewolf’s style of editing and directing, he brings all of his signature effects to the party. The foundation of the video begins in what seems to be a dark, spooky setting as animated lightning strikes in the distance. Eventually, a haunted-looking house is shown and the camera zooms into the window where we catch our first glimpse of Matt. He’s in some sort of green-lit setting that is gloomy and ominous as he dances around. The effects used make it look like the scene is choppy and lagged, giving some even more obscurity to the shot. The main scene that keeps popping up after this takes place in an alley as the two artists get together and back each other up while their counterpart brings the energy to its pinnacle. Other than this, certain animated scenes play out along with his ransom note-looking stylistic choices and various other effects that definitely elevate this visual incredibly.

It seems that this duo is a perfect match considering their equally aggressive styles combined with their versatility truly come together and make some magic. They just seem to have this effortless chemistry that invisibly assists the rest of the song in becoming a hit, and I hope to see them work a lot more together in the future. The Lonewolf music video that came along with the song was equally as entertaining and he did a great job of giving the two artists an eerie alternate universe that pairs with the track nicely. I know this offering has been out for a few days now so you might’ve already come across it, but if you haven’t, make sure to tune into “Tens into Benjamins” as soon as you possibly can.