Published Oct 04, 2018Mixing melodies and razor-sharp raps is no easy feat for anyone in today's rap game. Making toe-tappers with scripture-worthy lyrics requires poise, creativity and surgery-level precision, skills that usually take years for an artist to develop. That said, Montreal's Lou Phelps has managed to remarkably craft this bop-meets-bars formula at the tender age of 24, and 002/Love Me puts it on display for all to experience.
Opening cut "Fun N Games" ushers in the merrymaking vibes as Phelps promptly declares what listeners are hearing is "smooth shit." Upbeat horns, claps and drums provide a backdrop for him to get off some wildly relatable lines about millennial love life. "They say the best shit is a friendship / But we finna mess it up with some sex shit / It was all written down on the same script / Feeling like Shakespeare on a spaceship" is an example that have certainly crossed every 20-somethings' mind.
"Come Inside" stands out as the project's hit, with a pulsing beat courtesy of Lou's biological brother Kaytranada (who handles the majority of the project's beats) and of course because of the guest verse from Canadian cohort Jazz Cartier. While this posse parade will occupy the major airwaves, "Want To (For the Youth)" is the contrasting trap-esque smash that will feed the proverbial streets.
Phelps also unambiguously shows his private side on like "Squeeze" and "August Rain," both of which put the dance beats on ice, instead using more traditional R&B tones. The lyrics on this pair are straight from the confines of Lou's composite notebook — overflowing with relationship lines and deep thoughts.
002/Love Me builds on the framework that was apparent on his previous offering 001/Experiments and is his best work to date. Only time will tell if this project will be the best of his career but with such a instinctive flow and vulnerable lyrics on deck, it's hard to see how Phelps can lose in 2019 and beyond. Plus, it helps when you've got first dibs on Kaytranada beats. (Last Gang)