I first met Meyhem Lauren on Jamaica Avenue while I was shopping for sneakers. Actually it was on the Colloseum mall strip 164th Street. We began building on some Polo Ralph Lauren shit and plotting some deals since we were both big dudes. 3X+ ‘Lo heads gotta stick together. That was over five years ago and I’m still in the 3X range but Meyhem Lauren has slimmed down to looking like a heavyweight boxer, or better yet, a professional linebacker. I still find it hard to believe Meyhem Lauren is a rapper.
Meyhem Lauren doesn’t OD with hubris in his raps. He’s clearly a student of the boom bap rap school which keeps both feet on the ground and both eyes open, checking for D’s undoubtedly. The cautionary humble tales of the street are what the game’s been missing. Everyone isn’t flying on private jets after all. If Sean Price has shown me anything its that there is space for an artist who might have to stick you up after the show. I wouldn’t exactly put that label on Meyhem Lauren, but I definitely wouldn’t put it past him.
On a recent trip with Meyhem to the recording studio I had a chance to preview his latest project on the Mishka imprint, ‘Mandatory Brunch Meetings’. Fresh on the heels of his late summer EP ‘Respect The Fly Shit’ on the same label, produced entirely by Harry Fraud and Tommy Mas we get this full length album. Where RTFS had a raw energy and, well, mayhem to its production, this latest project features Meyhem’s fully contemplated lyrical ability. Respect The Fly Shit was a shotgun blast. Mandatory Brunch Meetings is an open heart surgery performed with a Rambo knife. The opening track produced by ATG has the drums and horns to let you know its time to listen up. Meyhem Lauren gives some of the hardest rhymes your earholes will hear in 2012. This shit goes HARD.
The majority of tracks on Mandatory Brunch Meetings were produced by the unheralded ATG. He provided a diverse soundbed to allow Meyhem to display his entire skillset. Harry Fraud music is on this album too. You may have already heard ’10 Dollar Lap Dances’. Mike Finito from the Das Racist Greedhead godhead puts in a few tracks and the omnipresent savior of boom bap rap, The Alchemist, has one of my favorite beats on this tape. The usual Meyhem Lauren suspects appear throughout like the charismatic Action Bronson and the enigmatic AG da Coroner. Maffew Ragazino features as well as Heems and Lakutis from Das Racist just to show that Meyhem Lauren even has a weirdo rap chamber. Who is this Gabbie Giftsz chick? She can rap.
Meyhem Lauren is part of a boom bap rap renaissance with the epicenter being somewhere near where the Grand Central Parkway and the Long Island Expressway intersect. There could be something special in the water in Queens so make sure you ask for the tap water when you go to this brunch meeting. Your attendance is mandatory.