The FADER’s “Songs You Need” are the tracks we can’t stop playing. Check back every day for new music and follow along on our Spotify playlist.
When Z Money and Valee’s “Two 16s” dropped in 2017, it was like an alien transmission had beamed in. There’s no hook, no themes flying over your head, and you’d be hard-pressed to find anyone else rapping like them. In one half there was Z Money’s wispy Gucci-like sneer and in the other, Valee’s breathless stream-of-consciousness flow. Valee’s frustrated that people think he’d eat at Outback, and Z Money’s hustling with an empty box of Pop-Tarts somewhere in the trash. It’s two 16-bar verses of straight rapping and not much more. There’s no need to make it any more complex.
“Risk,” their latest song, is a testament to their undeniable chemistry. Over a craterous beat from CheezzMusic, the duo hand off the mic to flex mismatched designer and fast cars. “T-Shirt 300, get one use out of it / My bitch call me fly, I’m proud of it,” Valee raps with a shrug. He never sounds fully satisfied with any of his flexes, but this one is warm and wholesome. A woozy hook from Z Money bookends the song, his rough voice smoothed into something lighter and slightly melodic. They could make reading from the dictionary sound good.
Thumbnail photo taken from video.