A few weeks ago Roosh Williams still, more or less, hadn't crossed over the mainstream line. His March LP had created a sizable dent through mentions by Complex and highly touted features with New York story-weaver Action Bronson and peerless Geto Boy Scarface himself. But seemingly nothing else had kicked in Williams favor, and the former University of Texas student turned Persian rap juggernaut knew it.
Then Simple Mobile and Levi Maestro came around. Under their "Change Your Game" promotion and campaign, the pitch was simple: head to Houston, find a rapper and give him the opportunity to change up his entire recording strategy.
That rapper? Williams himself.
Late Monday night, the final piece of his partnership with Simple Media was made public via Williams' five-track EP Drobots: The Reboot. The catch was that the EP be recorded in under 24 hours, under the watchful eye of Left Coast rapper/producer Like of seminal Cali trio Pac Div. Given the time constraints, Reboot should have been a challenge for Williams. Instead, it runs along a similar operandi of his previous titles, except he's far more relationship conscious this time.
As time progresses, we've come to know Devin the Dude as either the wisest man in Houston rap or its most relatable being. So when you hear him do a twangy song-and-dance about a woman you feel for post-amazing coitus, you instantly believe him. Here on "Another Sucka," Roosh does what the Dude does so well: translate his real-life female issues on wax instead of into arguments. His antagonist is the faceless Andrea and unlike the virtual army of opponents he positions himself against on almost every track, she somehow gets the best of him.
He even seems remorseful on the high-pitched synths and piano keys of "Got Me Fucked Up," staring at himself in the mirror and declaring of himself, "Overly competitive/ Felt the necessity to win even if that meant demolishing family and friends." The merry-go-round of children's voices here almost feels like window-dressing from Like, who elsewhere turns in trap chords and chants on "Water" as Williams' near warp-speed double-time flow almost black-holes the entire track and Like himself.
So what does the Reboot experiment teach us about Roosh? Nothing that we didn't know previously. He still flexes as one of the best long-setup deliverymen in Houston, capable of intricate one-liners and chuckle-worthy punch lines. He manipulates dreamlike closings on "R Double Outro" by mixing Houston's unmistakable slang with the words of his father and Allah and comparing vagina to a Nintendo character.
So has he changed? No, but his latest freebie just shows Roosh can adapt to any awkward situation.
Download Drobot: The Reboot at this link.
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