2017’s cup runneth over with good music, of all kinds.
From fun to enlightening. From singing to rapping.
From our hometown to yours and everywhere in between, we are dedicating the month of December to reviewing and reflecting on the music that helped make this year so important.
If you can name five rappers better than Bigg Fatts, I will give you $100. Five is conservative. I have half a mind to end this album review here and post it with a mic drop gif but, "Memoirs of the Kitchen Staff" deserves the red carpet roll out version of an album review.
No better word exists for what Bigg Fatts created with his latest release.
A historical account in album form. All parts of the album from the title and artwork to every feature verse, every bit of production and every bar Fatts spits is intentional and necessary. Bigg Fatts’ natural rapping abilities are far from undiscovered; anyone who has heard him rap is well aware, but new heights have been achieved with "Memoirs...". Every bit of Fatt's talent is channeled into the creation of a cohesive, meticulous story. "Memoirs of the Kitchen Staff" is one of the best albums released in 2017. With less than two months to fully appreciate the album as a whole, I am comfortable saying that if you enjoy and respect real rappin ass music as much as I do, "Memoirs of the Kitchen Staff" is one of the best albums, ever.
Much of the content Bigg Fatts effortlessly lays end to end on "Memoirs..." has been artificially generated, so successfully. On albums that aren’t as good. By artists who cannot rap as well as Fatts. *head explodes* So here is a novel idea, listen to Bigg Fatts instead. "Memoirs..." opens with a clip from Paid In Full and 40 Bars. Forty. Bars. Forty smooth ass bars that Southside all up and down an equally as smooth ass bass line. Forty bars that hold their own with any rap legend or favorite. Forty bars that establish one specific theme that holds true throughout the entirety of the album; self.
/self/ noun 1. a person's essential being that distinguishes them from others, especially considered as the object of introspection or reflexive action. Identity, character, personality. Soul.
Self reliance, self awareness, self confidence, I could go on for days but to my point, "Memoirs..." is 42 minutes of Bigg Fatts expressing self. No time is wasted on discussing drama, other people's business or anything that is not completely centered around Fatts and what he considers important. Sometimes really talented yet underappreciated artists start rapping about how talented and underappreciated they are, not Fatts. You won’t find him complaining about just dues or working hard, instead you’ll find him ministering and celebrating the inspiration, accountability and honesty that all those things have contributed to his story.
"Memoirs of the Kitchen Staff" is Bigg Fatts. As I went through trying to break the album down track by track, even with two paragraphs for each, it seemed to marginalize how calculated and well put together the album is. Press play and just let it go, you will not regret it. There is not one track that stands out, because all 11 tracks stand out. It must be mentioned that Show Louis’ features on the album are immaculate and provide a crucial element only he is capable of creating. OneHunnidt, Hot Peez, Rob Gullatte and DeLorean all bring their own unique style and perspective, all perfectly situated as essential pieces of the memoir. The Convo is something you need in your life on a daily basis, I can't think of a better back and forth rapping situation ever made, if you know one please send it my way. Thandi's powerful vocals lend yet another layer of depth on Power, one of the best displays of creative genius I have ever heard. All of the production on "Memoirs..." is provided by Pug Tunes. Pug and Fatts have found a sonic and creative balance that is indescribable. A cornerstone of the album's greatness is how well the production showcases Fatts’ lyricism and message. Also, every time Fatts shouts Pug out with a different nickname, I chuckle a little, it is just another bit of insight into Fatts' personality and the way he carries himself.
Labeling "Memoirs of the Kitchen Staff" anything other than perfection would be a disservice. It is not trap music, it is not battle rap, it is not anything that ever existed before it. Typically I go into great detail explaining my specific interpretations of an album but I truly believe anyone will be able to find whatever it is they are looking for in "Memoirs of the Kitchen Staff". Drug dealing, working 9-5, winning, losing, questioning religion (my goodness please go listen to Note 2 Self), asserting power, sharing knowledge. Whatever you have or are dealing with, this album is an assurance that you always have a chance to win, or at least come out on the other side if you don't win, today. At the same time, it is a call to action. By holding himself accountable rather than passing the buck, Fatts implores anyone listening to do the same. Because hell, even if you don't win tomorrow either, nobody is going to save you but you. In doing all this Fatts relays the fact that each and every one of us holds all of the power we keep looking for in other places. Self. Himself, yourself, ourselves.
You don't need to know Bigg Fatts or be from where he is from to relate to "Memoirs of the Kitchen Staff", you just need to have lived. A memoir. Write out every word from the album and it would result in a book worthy of the New York Times best sellers list. Bigg Fatts has been rapping for awhile out here, been living and surviving out here as well; "Memoirs..." is a representation of all that. Isn’t this what everyone keeps asking for? Some real rap? Some high quality, well put together, well versed, completely authentic, make you want to stand on somebody’s couch, really dope rap music? Facts, emotions, lessons, questions, introspection, shit talking, superb production and superior rapping. That’s what "Memoirs..." is. Bigg Fatts above everything else, is genuine. If Bigg Fatts is not one of the best rappers you have ever heard and if this album is not 100% representative of who he is, I will quit writing, today.