REVIEW: Good N Filthy – “Demolition Derby City”

Good N Filthy
Demolition Derby City
Little Heart Records

Of all of the early 2016 releases, I was especially looking forward to finally getting to hear Demolition Derby City in it’s entirety. Over the course of the last few months, Little Heart teased a few singles here and there, at the time serving as an appetizer whetting my appetite in anticipation of a fully cooked meal. At last, the collaboration from Mr. Goodbar and Filthy Rich is upon us, and it’s fucking glorious.

First, let’s talk about the beats constructed by Filthy Rich.  By now, from my vantage point I’ve grown to expect what I’ve heard before from this guy, which happens to be dark and grimy rhythm sections that while sometimes desolate, ultimately end up being alluring experiences, the sort of underground shit you’d never think of hearing on mainstream radio.  I’m referencing what I’ve heard on previous records that Filthy Rich has been behind such as Dollar Dollar Kills, Touch AC‘s – Satan’s On His Way And He Wants His Drugs, and the latest Skull Avalanche release.  The beats provided here are mostly dark and dirty, the kind of platform I could imagine Batman spitting a verse over in Gotham City.

Having said all of that, it’s surprising that throughout Demolition Derby City, Filthy Rich is at his best  when he’s smoothing things out with classic mafioso beats similar to Jay Z’s early Reasonable Doubt record.  Maybe I missed something, but I had no idea that he was capable of being responsible for this sort of radio-friendly platform, especially as well as it is presented on this record. “Kevin Costner – We Outchea” is a perfect example. Don’t get me wrong, the nasty, hard-hitting beats we’ve come to expect from Filthy are present, but this album works for me as a success when I’m compelled to take another drink, tap my foot, and nod my head.

As an emcee, Goodbar has been one of my hometown favorites for a while.  Up until a few months ago, he was a member of Skyscraper Stereo which abruptly decided to call it quits back in October.  Naturally, fans of the group were curious, but excited to see what the members of the now-defunct collective ended up doing, if anything.  Thankfully, that question was answered rather quickly with Demolition Derby City.  Goodbar aka Thur’good Bar’tholomew spits clever line after line referencing pop culture anecdotes especially notable to folks in the 25-35 age range.  In a way, his voice reminds me of a young, charismatic Kanye West, but his enthusiasm is fun and infectious in a way I can’t relate to any Louisville emcee I’ve heard as of yet.

As Louisville’s hip hop culture continues to grow and evolve, it seems imperative that releases like Demolition Derby City continue to materialize, because in my opinion, this noise raises the bar another level for both local emcees and homegrown producers.  I really don’t have anything negative to say about this record, and considering that I can easily say that this is a must-listen for not only fans of rap and hip hop, but for people that enjoy exciting new ideas.

Listen to Demolition Derby City on Spotify.