If you aren’t familiar, you may be forgiven for not instantly picking up on Jp. Come on, almost every rap name these days are meant to have a ‘Lil’ or a ‘$’ sign in there somewhere. Right?! Well Jp says fuck that.
His latest release Grumpy Old Man deserves your full attention. In an age where the hip hop “industry” is in massive flux, and values are watered down by commercial giants attempting to benefit from the hard work of others. We see an MC who’s not buying it.
Jp has crafted an album that conveys realness as a sense. It’s not for the fact that his beat choice reinforces some sound deemed to be all that, or for the fact that he spits in his natural accent or some other whack criteria. It’s the way Jp has approached the whole album that reinforces this feeling. Jp is a no frills rapper, he put’s the hip hop culture at the forefront and it works perfectly for him. Jp isn’t a young cat full of energy, he is a man who has past that time in his life. He is a Grumpy Old Man and his album embodies that to the fullest. What could be more real than that?
“The title for the project came first, before anything was even written. I’ve been a grumpy old man since I was 15. It informed the tone and themes explored within…” – Jp
We are probably selling Jp a little short here, he may still have a lot of energy for old man. He also doesn’t stick to the same formula throughout the entirety of the album. He is able to push the boundaries of his style when required and is successful in tying together the overall Grumpy Old Man concept. Breaking that down further, Jp has reached out to some of his friends to add their two cents worth on what being a ‘Grumpy Old Man’ means to them. These have taken the form of 3 skits placed throughout the album. We wont’ spoil them here but it’s worth checking out Djarmbi Supreme, Maundz and Dingoe jump on the soapbox for a moment.
“I reached out to those guys for the skits knowing their personas would suit and used them to move the album forward. I originally planned on doing those rants myself but eventually thought that having different guys would be more interesting. I got Djarmbi’s one first and died laughing when I heard it. I knew I was onto something so I reached out to the others.
Skits on an album can sometimes take away from the music and are really skippable. These ones though in my opinion really bolster the tracks and serve as the framework for the message I was trying to get across” – Jp
Piledriver, produced by echs Incognito is a fierce heavy hitter that see’s D. echs and Hos Flair enter the ring with Jp. The guys elbow dropping numerous wrestling angles and features some clever wordplay. Track 9, Grumpy Old Men is produced by Tiney Ted takes aim at rapper Allday. This was the result of a twitter beef that occurred a few months back. The track has echo Inconito, Wouldz, & Tiney Ted joining the assault, featuring cuts from Teddy Stylus. There are a few stiff jabs at Alldeezy, one to not usually shy away from conflict. It’ll be interesting to if there will be a response.
A massive shoutout must go out to all the DJ’s holding it down on this one. DJ Bogues, Elevate and Teddy Stylus kill it straight up. The intro track, Father Time has Bogues taking advantage of a killer cut from Saukrates track of the same name. Elevate nails Ball Don’t Lie, a track working those NBA themes to fine effect. Elevate threads numerous dope samples to with conviction, including a sweet little Ghostface Killah cut from Might Healthy. Elevate then backs it up on the spaced out Ibuprofen.
Producer Skitzo has paired well with Jp for the remainder of the album. Self Harm a more serious styled track in terms of themes, has Skitzo in the zone. The beat on this one will get your head nodding for certain. Jp kills it and there’s something about that sample that will have you coming back to this one. It’s clear Jp and Skitzo have developed a strong understanding of each others styles and how to best compliment each other on a track. This is further evident on Grifters, which ties out the album. This one picks up the pace and has Jp and UK native Noel Edge going in. Grumpy Old Man is a fine album, that has clearly been well thought out. There’s a lot of depth for 7 tracks and we think it’s well worth picking up.
Jp’s Grumpy Old Man is available now via Wandering Soul Music. You can pick it up here.