Now that we have evidence that Beyonce is not pregnant and plans to unleash a serious tranny army this summer, I can stop having full-on panic attacks. While Bey was belting over “Pon De Floor,” I knew others were in the lab lending their hand to songs I’ve already loved. Once I heard Fabolous was about to drop another mixtape full of re-upped concoctions, I immediately imagined riding around Brooklyn with the windows down, subwoofers blasting. Because this is a soul tape, I’ll be renting a Caddy for the season. Fabolous is one of the best to rap over R&B and soul beats—the steady calm of his voice, his sarcastic delivery and great punch lines are what make you feel like he’d be the kind of boyfriend that would take you to a luxury resort in Ibiza—then have a the room stocked with Super Soakers for a water fight. This is the Brooklyn way! Our summers are full of flossing while letting out your inner child.
I always Fabolous’ mixtapes for their playful nature and solid lyrics. This one delivers. When we spoke to Ryan Leslie a couple of weeks ago, he mentioned Fabolous’ ability to pick the beats that “he’s going to shine on.” On “Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing”—while rapping over Kanye West‘s “Devil in a Blue Dress”—Fab talks shit as if he’s delivering sermons, full of Brooklyn-bred smart ass quips: They say they all for dead presidents never respect it/ first of all, Ben Franklin was never elected/ that means them and big bills have never connected/ they just say it cuz they think it sounds clever on record.
He knows some of his peers are exempt from clownery, though. The closing track, “Pay Back Music”, pays homage to self-professed soul-lover Rick Ross and is safe to play loud without having people wondering if you’re hiding bullets in your Louboutin platforms. Fab doesn’t only do well when inspired by friends. On The Soul Tape he brings them to the table, working with trifecta counterparts R. Les and Ne-Yo on bonus cut, “You Be Killin’ Pt. 2“. It’s unknown if any of the other tracks on the tape were completed during the trio’s monster recording session, but hearing this one brings back the hope their super-group may really happen. Nothing says summer like a tribute to bad bitches, anyway. So maybe we can get a “Girls (Run The World)” remix with Fab’s grin plastered on top?
Preview and download the tape below, then tell me which tracks are your favorites in the comments.
Download: Fabolous’ The Soul Tape