Over the years King Los has proven himself through an abundance of mixtape releases to be one of the most talented lyricists that Hip Hop currently has to offer, but has seemed to just barely scratch the surface of mainstream success. The Baltimore MC has been noticeably quiet since the release of his 2015 studio debut God, Money, War, but is clearly rejuvenated and working relentlessly to close out 2017. Just a week removed from releasing G.O.A.T Tape, (another one of his signature freestyle-driven projects), Los is back again with a 13-track lyrical exhibition titled Moor Bars.
Moor Bars opens up with a Diddy served, who Los has signed to on two separate occasions, setting the stage with a brief, yet powerful message of motivation. Puff declares “Check this out, at the end of the day God put you on this Earth to be muthafuckin’ MC. That’s to be the baddest muthafuckin’ MC you can be.” Puff won’t be let down on this one, as each song effectively showcases his abilities as an MC. On “Stay Focused” Los addresses his absence over a soothing slow-paced instrumental rapping “For the last two years, I just watched the game and some of this would leave God ashamed/But I can look you in the eye when I provide my name/ You niggas don’t hypnotize me I can box the pain/For two years I ain’t just watch, I watched and trained.”
Throughout Moor Bars King Los briefly explores themes of social consciousness, addresses Hip Hop’s current state, God, love and more, making for a captivating listen. Despite tackling these topics for stretches, he does not deviate from the competitive bar-heavy style that has propelled him to be such a respected lyricist. This is best showcased on records like “Black Lights” or “Everybody’s a Bitch” where he taps fellow enlightened verbalists Hopsin and Royce Da 5’9 for a six-minute sparring session where each MC shows off the depths of their penmanship. The mixtape closes with “January 24th, 2017” wherein between some intricate jewel dropping is pretty much daring other rappers to challenge him.
The production on Moor Bars is solid and does not necessarily take away from the project, but upon completion you can’t help but wonder about the heights Los could reach musically if he was able to get in the studio with the likes of a Just Blaze, Alchemist or Statik Selektah — producers whose sound would greatly complement his skillset. Lyrically he is as potent as ever and is already gearing up for another mixtape before the release of his sophomore album in 2018.
Without a doubt, Moor Bars is an impressive effort. King Los is a special talent that always seems like he is on the brink of something massive, but doesn’t quite connect with the masses focused on casual partying. Regardless, the Baltimore native sounds refreshed and poised for another strong run, leaving fans optimistic about his next full-length LP.