Dave East - "Paper Chasin"

Dave East is cut from the same cloth as Saigon or Jay Electronica, but he's more prolific. It's a classic formula: young talent getting all the co-signs in the world, hella press coverage, high visibility guest spots, album coming soon. Jay Elec disappeared in style, but Saigon finally got that album out & now Dave East will, too.

It's called "Paranoia," which is appropriate, because yo, what the fuck is a debut album when you're ten mixtapes deep? East dropped Kairi Chanel last year, and that had fifteen tracks, verses from Cam'Ron and Beanie Sigel, and it charted on Billboard for a minute there. It was also released on an actual record label, with offices and money. Run by Nas.

So apparently a debut album, in 2017, is a PR gimmick for making your eleventh mixtape seem like a big event. I can respect that. This is tradecraft.

Music videos that play like action movies are always a good call, just like hiring A$AP Ferg. The production values here are pretty film school, but they do amazing work at film school these days. You can only see the seams if you've had to budget or edit that shit before. Their Denzel-alike is an amazing score, he classes the video up so much he almost steals the show.

All in all, this is solid product, a vapid shitrock, one more New York City brick in the wall. Dave East has a flawless flow but, like Saigon or Jon Connor, it's too familiar to be compelling. He's not more than the sum of his influences, and he doesn't have the charisma to make his orthodoxy entertaining. Think Action Bronson or Fashawn: it's nothing new but they have some fucking fun with it.

Both stars are for A$AP Ferg.

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