💽 sleep paralysis by BbyMutha

Will Kaplan reviews BbyMutha's 2024 album sleep paralysis

BbyMutha is chaotic, we know that. But chaotic good, neutral or evil? Well that varies track to track on her new album sleep paralysis. Over bobbing house beats, the rapper dishes intricate disses, outlandish flexes, and surreal threats. In addition to her steady charismatic flow, her taste for raunchy lyrics may make her a worthy heir to Gangsta Boo. For her sophomore record, BbyMutha employed 9 producers  to draw predominantly from UK garage. The undulating bass and syncopated rhythms make a nice contrast to her locked in delivery. 

The 11 songs unfold with a similar mix of ingredients deployed in different sequences. A few crisp verses season each track distinctly, while a memorably  obscene hook may double as a chorus. A verse like...

Yeah, I do whatever I want
Shit on these bitches
I'm taking a dump
I'm BbyMutha
The one with the lump
I like yo bitch
I might give her my funds

...off opener “gun kontrol,” is an instant classic–and one of the least vulgar entries of the record. Wisely, she leaves a break on each song to let the sweaty beats breathe. They’re refreshing pauses to soak up the swelling bass and skittering drums. 

True to its name sleep paralysis progresses from fun club tracks into a more menacing horrorcore sound. Tracks, like “final girl” and “mutha massacre,” favor trap beats perhaps more primary to the native Tennessean. While these get old faster than the earlier songs, it’s a nice amount of variety, especially at the compact runtime of 32 minutes.  I keep returning to sleep paralysis  to hear a bad bitch spitting deep in the pocket over great beats, while staying wildly out-of-pocket with her lines. 

One More Thing

Painter Danica Lundy creates mesmerizing and grotesque tableaus of daily life seen from the perspective of inanimate objects: the mouth of a water bottle, a car ignition, the bottom of a gym bag. To capture our interactions with these objects and our environments, she presents an x-ray view through surfaces to yield deeply evocative images rich with bodily detail that one can almost smell. 

Up Next

I'd pay good money to see Kim Gordon, The Sun Ra Arkestra, or Slauson Malone 1. But in a blessing to New Yorkers, Summer Stage has assembled all three for a free concert in Central Park next Thursday, the 13th.  Summer in the city may be smelly and sweltering, but events like this make it all worth it. 

Will Kaplan is a writing artist based in Queens, NY. Find him on instagram: @will.kaplan