Young Nudy – Gumbo

A rich serving of rap thrills...

Young Nudy has welcomed a debate. You’re either scaring the hoes or hitting the sweet spot on one of Nudy’s ominous creations. I’d choose the latter. The decorated East Atlanta heavyweight has returned with this food-themed offering, joining hip-hop’s list of rappers naming albums and song titles after foods – a proud cc for MF DOOM’s ‘Rap Snitch Knishes’ and J Dilla’s ‘Donuts’. In the world of rap kitchens, Nudy’s offering of ‘Gumbo’ is a set menu of 13 tracks, including two features from Key Glock and a return of veteran resident 21 Savage. Gumbo serves as the follow-up to Nudy’s ‘EA Monster’ LP, which dropped in August 2022.

Recruiting Coupe as a two-twin chef duo, and serving numerous offerings of the chef’s special the pair are synonymous with bouncing off each other. It’s miraculous how Coupe has gifted Nudy the ability to turn his accent and twang into a melody. Equally, the rap mainstay’s enunciation remains staccato. In contrast, the musical backing is sparse, with basic melodic loops and sliding basslines.

Conversations with Nudy are filled with threats stuffed to the brim, firmly etched into lyrics such as “Don’t be a opp, your ass is finished”; perfectly illustrated in Brussel Sprouts.  and again exemplified in M.R.E where angst-ridden Nudy affirms “I’ma kill that mu***ka talkin’ s**, y’all know what I’m sayin’”? For real”. Nudy has charmed his listeners with his murderous lyrics and ghoulish confessions, for first-timers it may be a jump scare to hear “I got G.I. Joes, big gun”, but for regulars, it’s a regular occurrence like the soup of the day. 

From a takeaway perspective, the album includes life advice from Nudy on money management (“If a n***a wanna touch a hundred thousand, get out the hood or never feel it”). Into the bargain, a snippet of Nudy on a courtship endeavor sounds like Passion Fruit, and includes one-liners like  “If I had a main, I wish it was you”. The menu is poignant from the opening track but thirst does quench for more once we reach halfway. Faint nods to Game Boy instrumentals and spaghetti western soundtracks are the dishes but the ornament is minimal. 

A highly favoured try has to be the Pi’erre Bourne and Key Glock feature on ‘Pot Roast’. Pi’erre Bourne and Nudy sit comfortably as the albums wine pairing, with the addition of ‘Glock’, it’s a garnished earworm. We can celebrate production credits across Nudy’s discography and ‘Gumbo’ is no exception. While it may not be the East Atlanta rapper’s best, it still stands as a solid successor to ‘EA Monster’. 


Words: Thandie Sibanda

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