Though he’ll be behind bars until 2016, at this point it should be crystal clear that nothing is going to stop Radric Davis — better known as Gucci Mane — from delivering quality street music to the masses. After already releasing a plethora of projects this year, Guwop dropped even more heat for his fans on July 28, the same date that the Brick Squad frontman made a Georgia courtroom appearance. The Oddfather is a solo album produced entirely by fellow ATL native C4, and it contains features from usual suspects such as Young Thug, OJ Da Juiceman, and PeeWee Longway. Gucci is often lauded as one of the game’s most consistent rappers, so it’s no surprise that he sticks to the script with this 15-track body of work.
The Oddfather starts off with a bang, as the intro track touches on many important aspects of Gucci’s past and present. From inside the pen, he explains, “So many cousins at my house I didn’t have nowhere to sleep/Didn’t notice I was poor until I walked down the street/Rather have holes in my shoes than have no shoes on my feet.” While some detractors may point to the rugged sound quality of Guwop’s vocals on “Oddfather Intro,” one cannot knock its authenticity. While giving it a listen, it’s easy to imagine the ice cream cone face tattoo-bearing rapper donning prison garb and phoning in his verse.
Gucci shows off his lyrical chops on track two, “Gunnin.” Drawing on legends for inspiration, he spits, “Many men wish death upon me, so Guwop feel just like young 50/Teardrops, I gotta get three more ‘cause I can’t go out like ‘Pac and Biggie.” Blaze Servin’ provides one of the project’s top verses on track four, “Brick N a Brick,” throughout which he drops simile upon simile comparing his abilities in the dope game to various pro athletes. “Got bucks like Jabari/Goddamn got plugs in Milwaukee/I got nuggets like Quincy Miller I’m dealin’, go figure,” Blaze spits, whose voice and flow sound eerily similar to those of another artist: King Louie out of Chicago.
“Flight Risk” is the album’s best record thanks to a catchy, ad-lib heavy hook from Young Thug, something we’ve grown accustomed to seeing from the 21-year-old over the past year. The entire project shines from a production standpoint, but the album’s best beat doesn’t appear until track 10, “Wednesday.” Gucci shows love for his “middle of the week freak,” and the chemistry between Guwop and C4 reaches its pinnacle. The following song is named after the Redskins’ starting quarterback, but in reality has nothing to do with RGIII. Instead, Gucci and OJ da Juiceman see how many football analogies they can make in relation to their area of expertise: moving bricks.
Guwop’s latest effort may not be perfect, but it’s Gucci Mane through and through. Dope artwork, solid guest features, and terrific beats courtesy of C4 are a recipe for repeated listens. There’s always something to be said about a project that only has one producer, and the method works to Gucci’s advantage in this case. More than anything, The Oddfather is yet another example of the 34-year-old’s insane work ethic. He’s still got a couple more years to go at a federal detention center in Lovejoy, Georgia, but don’t expect Guwop to put his career on hold anytime soon.—Eli Schwadron