Roach Gigz: Buggin' Out

Roach Gigz is a clear-cut product of his musical environment. At 21 years old, the San Francisco rapper came of age at the peak of the Bay Area's mid-'00s hyphy music, a local rap sub-genre fueled by elastic drum machines and a "go dumb," fun-over-everything ethos that eventually tipped to the point of sheer hedonism. It proved predictably short-lived, but no less influential. On Bitch, I'm A Player, Roach tethers hyphy's free-wheeling impulses to rap's more deliberate present tense. He's an airy and limbless rapper, finding a comfortable space between Lil Wayne's scattershot rasp and Eminem's multisyllabic splatter. He also shares Em's affinity for mischief, exploring familiar terrain like drug use and sexual exploits with a palpable playfulness. On the appropriately titled "F A Chorus," he raps for a solid three minutes without coming up for air, as he bounces around occasionally bizarre stream-of-consciousness boasts: "When I get rich I'mma have midget doormen." And yet, amidst this irreverence Roach occasionally proves downright thoughtful, breaking from the goofiness to lament the allure of street culture or the rapid gentrification of his hometown. It's these moments that keep Roach grounded. His calm is every bit as valuable as his chaos. – Andrew Nosnitsky, Google Play

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