Album Review: Jordy And Elt Cheekz Bring The Heat On ‘If I Couldn’t Rap, I Wouldn’t Rap’
28 Oct 2022
‘If I Couldn’t Rap, I Wouldn’t Rap’, is a bold statement to make on the title of a project. It leaves the artists vulnerable to criticism and sets a precedent from the outset that the tape will deliver across the board. For Jordy and Elt Cheekz however, there was little doubt that their output would be anything short of excellent. The title is a harking back to the final track of Jordy’s last project, ‘SPECIAL’, where Cheekz uses the bar on his guest verse.
The two cousins have linked up previously across Jordy’s projects, and Cheekz is starting to grow as a solo artist too, dropping the excellent ’ESTATES’ a few weeks ago. There is no doubting their chemistry and their latest offering does not disappoint, combining a range of sounds, flows, and influences to create a succinct and high-quality body of work.
The self proclaimed ‘First mix-album’ kicks off with ‘BLACK BEATLES’, a perfect entrance into the project as the spacey instrumental allows both rappers room to flow and express themselves. Cheekz kicks off proceedings with a smooth verse before Jordy steps it up a gear with the energy on his section. The two rappers complement each other perfectly with all green links, as can be seen on the outro to the opener where they go back to back and slow down the tempo, giving the audience a memorable finish to the track. Furthermore, the addition of Margs and Loons from the No Behaviour podcast, as well as Lippy as hosts, gives this record the feel of an old school mixtape and brings a vibrancy across the tracklist.
Jordy and Cheeky, along with TJ and The Confect on production, have managed to bring a variety of sounds to this project, tapping into multiple genres of instrumentals and experimenting with melodies along the way. Jordy’s pitched up vocals on the hook of ‘KILLY’, accompanied by the dreamy strings and hard hitting bassline, make this one of the standouts on the tape. This also contrasts with ‘JUICE’, one of the more uptempo tracks that brings out the best from both rappers.
Elt Cheekz also shows off his melodic ability on tracks such as ‘BATMAN’ and ‘WHERE WAS YOU’, the latter track again showing off both rappers at their very best. In what has been a relatively short career for both rappers so far; especially Cheekz, the levels in terms of songwriting and composition are only getting higher as they progress as artists. This all comes together on the final track, ‘NARCOS’, where each artist takes it in turns to deliver a stellar verse over a Latin-American inspired backdrop.
What sets these rappers apart from the rest is their ability for one liners, as well as their visceral storytelling. Cheekz’ opening verse on ‘TEN TOES’ is probably his most emotive and introspective on the project, as he describes his journey and all of its trials and tribulations to this point in his career. Jordy has already demonstrated throughout his discography his capability as a lyrical technician, and on this tape he shows no signs of slowing down. His verses on ‘ALL WEEK’, and ‘WHERE WAS YOU’ may well be some of his best to date.
Both artists have come out and more than lived up to the expectations they’ve set for themselves with the title of this record. The nine deep tracklist has no real misses and sees Jordy and Cheeky at the top of their respective games. As we see more and more collaborative tapes coming out of our scene, this one sits in the upper echelons of any we have heard this year. For Jordy, this only compounds the idea that he is one of the most exciting artists in the UK today, while Elt Cheekz has certainly cemented himself as a one to watch as we go into the new year.
Star Rating 4.5/5