Hip hop and rap appear to be at a crossroads in recent times. The one-verse mumble rappers of the mid-to-late 2010s appear to be falling off, and the style has break up into two camps: the sleek, stylized verse barons like Jack Harlow who name again to the golden age of rap a’la Snoop Dogg, and the super-fast Mac Miller followers like Megan Thee Stallion who’re articulate and exact however with rather less swag. A choose few rappers can do each; Nana Bangz is one in every of them.
With a totally late 90s aesthetic and channeling Lil’ Kim power on steroids, Nana’s verses are about as tight as they arrive and her freestyle sport matches her big efficiency character. Together with her first singles out in 2018, it appears Nana got here out of the gate swinging, with a well-developed fashion and a capability to wind her verses across the beat with a proficiency that takes many artists many years. From her intro brag observe referred to as “Present Me Love” setting a formidable baseline, issues solely obtained higher from there as Nana proceed to hone her craft. From 2021’s “Free Britney” by way of the 15 or so tracks she’s launched in 2022 and 2023, Nana continued to showcase her various fashion and mastery of the mic.
Nana’s first observe of 2024 is “Alive,” one other instance of her capacity to change kinds and create all kinds of verse, even inside one observe. Channeling the aggression of Woman of Rage with the social gathering acumen and dusky vocal timbre or Cunning Brown, “Alive” sees Nana switching from clean verse fashion to indignant and heavy to whip-fast lyrics all within the house of a few minute. On prime of that, the manufacturing for “Alive” is sort of completely different, with a classical string pattern floating over the beat as one in every of Nana’s most aggressive lyrical assaults to-date bangs out round it. It’s clear the distinction is in function, with the juxtaposition of the melodic music serving to spotlight the heaviness of the verse.
Together with her stable vocals, vocabulary and verse, it appears solely a matter of time earlier than Nana Bangz is found for the expertise she is, however that doesn’t appear to matter to the born pure rapper. A musician to the core, probably the most compelling arguments for her love of hip hop and dedication to her craft is in a video from final 12 months of her avenue efficiency in New Orleans. Together with her music movies being so stylized, this efficiency video with nothing greater than a drummer for backing exhibits not solely Nana’s wonderful efficiency expertise however her real love for the verse. Anybody with that mush ardour and expertise is a star wherever they go.