Sheck Wes is More Than a Frat Superstar: MUDBOY Review

I can’t remember the last time that I was at a party this year where Mo Bamba by Sheck Wes wasn’t played. As soon as the familiar piano pattern comes in, face after face light up, and mosh pits begin even before Wes’s familiar flow comes in: “I got hoes, calling…”. Mo Bamba turned Sheck Wes into a frat superstar, becoming iconic even before Mo Bamba hit the Billboard Charts (it’s currently at 31).

The rapper’s first album, MUDBOY, shows that Wes is infinitley more than Mo Bamba. Don’t worry Wes hasn’t lost his iconic party anthems, but this record shows that he’s more than your go-to pregame track. Wes is a versatile rapper, making club-ready anthems and introspective tracks flow together to make one stellar album. From talking about living in the Harlem projects on Live Sheck Wes to his newfound success on Vetements Socks to his experience with crime on Wanted, it’s clear Wes has a lot to say, and he’s going to do it over intricate, hardcore beats.

Also, it’s worth noting Wes’s label. MUDBOY was released through a joint venture of G.O.O.D. Music and Cactus Jack Records. Those labels should sound familiar to any rap fan G.O.O.D. Music was founded by Kanye West, and Cactus Jack Records was founded by Travis Scott. Scott and West are indisputably two of hip hop’s most powerful players, and their support of Wes proves that he is truly something special.

Here are the highlights of the album:

Live Sheck Wes This song was released as a single before MUDBOY dropped, and it’s quickly become one of my all-time favorite songs. The refrain of “Live Sheck Wes/bitch, I’m dying Sheck Wes” is catchy, getting stuck in your head long after the song ends. Live Sheck Wes is electrifying, and a sure bet to get your party started.

Gmail The way Wes says “Sheck Jesus” and “Mudboy” in the intro to this song are two of the most captivating things on this album. The beat of this song is bass-heavy, urgent, and explosive, and Wes’s flow is clean, making this song one of the best on the album. Another iconic moment? Wes explaining why he often uses the word “bitch” as an ad-lib: “It’s the only word…/Where I can feel and hear all my anger/It don’t got nothin’ to do with like bitches/It’s just- Bitch! Bitch!”.

WESPN This song is one of the standouts on this album because of how different it is from what fans would consider Wes’s “normal.” The beat is chill and dreamlike, and Wes is almost singsong-y as he discusses his childhood and come up. The song feels like a Lil Peep-esque song, but with Wes’s iconic spin put on it (i.e. his enthusiastic adlibs are still featured in this track). It’s the interesting dynamic between the two that makes this song one of my personal favorites.

Fuck Everybody With a title like Fuck Everybody, it’s safe to assume this song is going to be angry, and it is. Wes talks about keeping his circle small, and it’s obvious that even though Wes’s career is young, he’s not one to be messed with. Wes is after the gold, and with confidence like he displays in this track, he’s going to get it.

Vetements Socks In my opinion, Wes is rap’s next superstar, and this track displays that he knows that. He follows the Kanye West model of being your biggest hype man (thankfully, he doesn’t follow the Kanye West model of going off the rails), displaying that with lyrics like: “Sheck Wes is ahead, tell these n****s catch up”. It’s clear that Wes won’t stop until he reaches the top, and it’s his hungry energy that is so captivating.