By Kwase Lane, Features Editor
[Independent Records; 2020]
Key tracks: “Hitman”, “Blow”, “Glutton”
Clocking in at just over 13 minutes, Father’s newest project Tha Thingz I Do 4 Money, sees him returning to old habits. For fans of Father, this means new content you will undoubtedly enjoy; however, if you’ve grown tired of his signature sound, then this probably isn’t the project for you. Tha Thingz I Do 4 Money takes a little while to heat up, and even though it ultimately does, that wasted potential is only made more evident by the EP’s extremely short runtime. That isn’t to say there are any bad tracks on this project, but there’s only so much fat that can be cut when the project is so gaunt.
Read more: Album Review: Father – I’m A Piece Of Shit
“Hitman” is classic Father. It’s a wonder how many times he can repeat the formula of floating his gravelly voice over twinkling instrumentation and still make it feel fresh. That’s owed in part to how much Meltycanon does with so little in this song’s production. The track begins with a twinkly xylophone that eventually finds its place beside driving bass and whirring synths. The gentle beauty of the music is juxtaposed against its lyrics. Every so often, a bar about cutting off a man’s hand or taking his soul peeks through the smooth musicality. You might not agree, but this is definitely the cutest song about maiming a man I’ve ever heard.
No matter what headphones you have, chances are they won’t do the grimy bass of “Blow” justice. Father plays more of a supporting role in this track. His low vocals just can’t cut through the sonic miasma that he’s surrounded by. Fortunately, Hook’s feature lends some much-needed clarity to the song. She’s no stranger to rapping over stripped back, dark, booming beats, and she brings her three albums worth of experience to make this one of Father’s better songs to fit that description.
“Glutton” is hollow in the best way possible. The entire track is built atop a dripping water sample that fades into the back and becomes a sort of white noise. This is joined by a simple guitar chord progression, a clap sample and synths that dart in and out periodically throughout the song. It’s just enough to support Father’s vocals and let him stand front and center. The emptiness brings out the more melodic qualities of his laid-back delivery. This is especially true in both of the verses when Father’s vocals are breathier and sound like they might shatter the thin harmony he’d weaved up until those points.
Tha Thingz I Do 4 Money is a mixed bag, making the EP’s brevity more apparent and demonstrating a lack of room for error. The pieces that don’t stand out still bring some semblance of experimentation, but not in a way that justifies their place on this EP. Even if there is some comedic value to sampling the yessir meme, that novelty is quickly dwarfed by how irritating it becomes. On a longer project, fumbles like these become less noticeable and maybe even an asset in a roundabout way; however, when the project is only 13 minutes long, 1/3 of that being dedicated to mediocre tracks is definitely a letdown.