Cadence Weapon: Afterparty Babies

Music Reviews Cadence Weapon
Share Tweet Submit Pin
Cadence Weapon: Afterparty Babies

On Cadence Weapon’s second album, Afterparty Babies, the 22-year-old Canadian rapper and producer (born Rollie Pemberton) mixes sharp, smart lyrics with nimble dance tracks

. His vocals sound half-submerged amidst the pounding beats, like someone shouting over the din of a raging party. On “Do I Miss My Friends?” he raps over a beat built solely from Bobby McFerrin-like vocal percussion. Many of the cuts, such as “Limited Edition OJ Slammer,” use 8-bit video game sounds; others, like “House Music,” appropriate Baltimore booty bass.

Cadence’s unique production skills make for hip-hop songs that sound like no other. But unlike “club rap” contemporaries such as the Cool Kids and Kid Sister, he demonstrates a exudes a certain restless intelligence. For “Messages Matter,” he mocks hipster clichés, noting “I don’t respond to emoticons of emotion.” And on “Juliann Wilding,” he opens a portrait of a party girl by asking, “Have you ever done coke off a book?/ It ain’t the Bible, but it will have to do.”

As a knowing send-up of youth culture, Afterparty Babies can be both funny and obnoxious. The beats are so chaotic and loud that they take some getting used to. Don't wait for Cadence Weapon to slow down, though. As he says on "In Search of the Youth Crew," he's too busy sneaking into the club so he can both parody that lifestyle and enjoy it with his friends.