With his latest mixtape, The MOEna Lisa, DaVinci continues to chronicle the darker side of the streets, with even more of the gritty tales that fuelled his previous releases. As ever, it’s an intriguing musical hybrid; a sound which rolls with the smooth bounce of his native Bay Area, but has a core infused with dry and steady flows that are more reminiscent of classic, East Coast hip-hop, ghetto reportage.
In less deft hands the unrelentingly harsh realities of his subject matter could overwhelm enjoyment, but a supremely high consistency in his choice of samples on tracks such as “Nothin Finna Stop Me” and “Fuck Everybody But Me”, keenly sharp rhyming on “Cheeba” or “Paper Power Pussy” and his most commercial sound to date on “Let Me Down Easy”, combine to save the album from turning into an exercise in bleakness. Much of which hints towards a broader horizon both lyrically and sonically.
So whilst not quite the masterpiece to which its title alludes, it certainly feels like a definite artistic progression, with a view towards even greater things in the future.