Since his 2013 release of Crenshaw, blue’d up MC Nipsey Hussle has been on a trajectory to become a California great. Nip has been riding high with YG as they performed their incendiary track “FDT” across the country but now Crenshaw’s own is back with new music. Famous Lies & Untold Truths is a five-track, 13-minute EP meant to whet the appetite of Nip’s fanbase as they await his upcoming album Victory Lap.
Nipsey has an uncanny ability to blend West Coast gangsterisms with a universal storytelling appeal. His diction and wordplay allow him to transcend regions and reach fans across the Hip Hop gamut. That’s on full display with Famous Lies & Untold Truths as Nipsey goes from Los Angeles to Philadelphia to tag team with Freeway on “Fucc ‘Em” (that’s two C’s if you need a reminder). Over crisp hi-hats and well-placed percussion, with a slow, syrupy melody line reminiscent of a cutaway scene from Dead Presidents, Nipsey wax poetics, “Lately I’ve been seeing niggas sell they soul, how you catch a case and bail out on parole/I’ve been state to state getting money on the road, had to re-evaluate who I could talk to on the phone/switch it up, spit the game pay attention you should listen up/follow code and one day you’ll get as rich as us.” Philly Freezer delivers one of the most potent verses of his long, storied career as he graciously flows over the production with potency, “Fucc each and every one of them, I fear none of them, Frank Lucas pushed the truth back in front of ‘em/leave a nigga toothless when it comes to the loot, I go stupid with the butt of the gun know where I’m coming from.”
From Philly, Nipsey ventures down south to Miami and snagged Rick Ross for the menacing “Mark My Words.” His ability to push a higher way of thinking to his audience on a commercial level is evident as he lays down lines like, “Grind strenuous, cash out continuous, mogul in the making, autonomous black businesses/broken culture that we all lost niggas in, elevated innovation over ignorance” and “Go flourish, double back and come get your niggas/pass the power to your people, it ain’t nothing realer.” Nip more than holds his own with Rick Ross over the perfectly simplistic piano riffs and well-placed drums that don’t overpower the lyrics.
While this EP may be a short play and will leave much to be desired as it’s implied the best is still yet to come, the lyrical dexterity and potency further cement him in the upper echelon of Left Coasters. In just 13 minutes, Neighborhood Nip displays maturity and growth that will invigorate his fanbase as they await the full-length album.