After a year of headlines dominated by A$AP Rocky, Harlem, New York upstart’s A$AP Mob finally got to show fans the group’s direction on their debut mixtape Lords Never Worry. Now, in a recent interview with the Village Voice, the whole A$AP Mob broke down the innerworkings of their collective.
First, Rocky’s A&R and manager A$AP Yams spoke on the Southern Hip Hop comparisons that Rocky’s music has inspired in critics. Yams explained that what many critics fail to realize is that the entire crew drew influence from both Southern and traditionally New York artists. He added that while his musical preference lies with acts like Nas and the Ruff Ryders, they were equally inspired by No Limit and contemporary Southern acts.
“Rocky is New York rap. He’s what a 20-something-year-old kid from Harlem sounds like. New York[ers have] just been in the club too long, so they don’t know what the young kids on the street sound like,” Yams explained. “We grew up listening to No Limit as much as Ruff Ryders, so that influence is going to come across in the music. To me we’re the best generation because we were old enough to hear the late-’90s rap and be influenced by it but we’re still young. I remember It Was Written. That shit influenced me. The whole Bad Boy era of the late ’90s, Life After Death and No Way Out, that era influenced me greatly. Rocky and them are on some high-fashion shit, but I just keep it late ’90s.”
A$AP Nast also weighed in on the many Wu-Tang Clan comparisons the Mob has received since they burst on the scene. While he said that it’s an honor to be even named in the same breath as the almighty Wu, he wishes critics would let them better establish their own agenda before jumping to conclusions. Nast and fellow member A$AP Ferg went on to discuss which members of the Wu they feel they best represent in the A$AP Mob.
“Oh man, it’s an honor [to be compared to the Wu],” said A$AP Nast. “I grew up listening to those dudes. For us to be fresh out the gate and people are already making those comparisons feels great. I kinda wish they would let us be us before comparing us to people, but I can’t be too mad if we’re getting compared to the greats…I want to say [that I’m most like] Ghostface…but I’m going to go with Ol’ Dirty Bastard. He just stood out so much. His style was so distinct. He stood out the most to me from the rest of the Clan.”
A$AP Ferg added, “[I’d be] Method Man. I think if Yams and Rocky would be RZA, then I’d be Mef because of his charisma, and he’s got the side group thing with Redman, plus the acting. He’s just the most all around. That’s me within A$AP. I would’ve said ODB because I like to harmonize, too, but that’s more Nast.”