Here’s the pitch, swung on, and it’s a… well, it’s at least a standing double. On his latest CD, Raptillion, the MC from Oregon known as the Dirtball doesn’t hit the ball out of the park, but he does make solid contact. Rapid-fire rhymes and an ear for catchy choruses distinguish the rapper’s style, which at times sounds something like a sharper-edged Big Boi. Over the course of 20 tracks, the Dirtball explores some of the most familiar themes in gangster rap—haters and hustlers, to name a few—but he also enters new lyrical territory, even going so far as to develop a baseball metaphor on the song “Batter Swing”. The glitchy, IDM-inspired beats perfectly compliment the Dirtball’s kinetic delivery. Those looking for a groundbreaking album should look elsewhere, but anyone who wants tight flows, solid production, and catchy hooks need look no farther than Raptillion.
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// Notes from the Road
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