nige hoodCharlotte rapper NiGE Hood has put out an explosive album. Regardless of the general excitement I always get when an artist comes out of Queen City,  Return of the Nasty is a valid installment to the great albums released this year, and is definitely something to get excited about.

The album is a grand twenty tracks, so to start off our journey through the first half I’ll list my favorite tracks in succession; “Wavi Girls,” “What is the Nasty?” and “Eargum.” In these songs, Nige Hood spits funny intelligent lyrics that (if you listen) will easily have you cracking a smile.  “What is the Nasty?” is one of a couple PSA-style tracks on the album; it’s fun and gross and hilarious, which, in a nutshell, provides you with the general tone of the rest of the album.

In an interview with UNCC Radio, Nige Hood cites short 1-2 minute sixties jams as the original songwriting templates he used growing up. This is evident in the brevity of tracks like “All those Tats” and “What is the Nasty?” both under two minutes long but remain steadfast solid installments.

Return of the Nasty‘s production is a work of art. Much like the pictures Hood describes drawing growing up, his beats are layered in cool ways that I’d normally associate with alternative electronic bands like Lolawolf. On his website, Nige Hood calls himself a ‘folk rapper’, a contradicting term that I was unfamiliar with until previously, but after some research I gathered is a kind of alternative style of hiphop whose goal is convey a certain story. In conjunction, I’d like to continue to highlight the pronige hood performingduction in such an album as this, for it’s refreshing instrument, engaging beats, and overall solid sound.

Moving on, towards the middle of the album, “Right as Rain” is a dreamy track with a retrospective vibe that slackens the audiences heartbeat until “NC Killas” comes on to shock them back to life. NC Killas (ft. Verbal Van Gogh, Lotta)” is a promising track that will surely be on repeat on my phone this weekend. Hood’s flow is below freezing while the hook is  simple and addictive. And yes, Nasty starts out strong but the real hits arise within the second half. “Fried on Friday” is the kind of end-of-the-week jam I’d expect to hear blasting from the stereo of any car peeling out of a school parking lot. It’s basic beat and repetitive hook make it nothing special, but overall still a strong track. Once the weekend parties begin, “Medicine,” probably the most popular song on the album, presents itself as a catchy dance track. At this pace, NiGE Hood has a prosperous future ahead of him an industry with a vacancy in of ‘folk rappers.’ I’m truly excited of his potential and think you should be too.