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It’s no longer a surprise that some of the hardest-hitting bars in hip-hop consistently come from the stone-cold cities of central New York State. The Buffalo-Syracuse-Rochester movement was ignited by Griselda, the loose-knit rap and fashion collective founded by Westside Gunn, Conway the Machine, and Mach-Hommy in 2012. A decade later, they’ve expanded their arsenal to a dozen artists, including legendary New Orleans emcee Jay Electronica and standout Detroit spitter Boldy James among their ranks but largely maintaining their focus on regional talent.
Armani Caesar, the Buffalo rapper who became Griselda’s First Lady in 2018, has since become one of its strongest performers, dropping the stellar Pretty Girls Get Played Too that same year and The Liz, an even more impressive project, in 2020. And today, she’s revealed that The Liz 2 will arrive September 2. For “Hunnit Dolla Hiccup,” out now along with the announcement, she enlisted fellow Nickle City native/Griselda stalwart Benny The Butcher and 2021 Syracuse-based signee Stove God Cooks to create a posse cut for the ages.
The new track pits the trio against the type of ominous piano beat that’s become a Griselda standard. “It’s Louie-studded goose now, hunnit dolla hiccup / They say I got the juice now, like I murked Bishop,” Armani raps in her obliterating first verse, alluding to everyone’s favorite 1992 coming-of-age cult classic. Benny and Stove both lay down characteristically solid verses, but neither quite matches her lead-off run. All the rapping is accomplished within the song’s first three minutes, giving the listener a full 30 seconds to recover from the verbal assault as the beat rides out.