La Cartita --- Veneno is a Los Angeles rappper from the West LA based SouthSider organization, Harpy's. Operating in music for decades now, his latest is 'Trap Mexicano', available on all major digital platforms. In 'Trap Mexicano', Veneno's 2018 release, listeners get bombarded with low synth bass and keys that are as unique as they are heavy. Like a complex rock album, Veneno's tracks take more than a few listens to fully appreciate, but after a few workouts - personally, this is my gym music - 'Dale Gas' and 'Fuego 420' stand out as theme music for the roughest part of your day. Even so, we note some highlights that will jump out immediately.
Veneno: Fuego-420 off of 'Trap Mexicano' (2018)
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With lyrics mostly in Spanish, the album is rhythmically diverse and injects colloquial Mexican
lingo throughout. For instance, 'Dale Gas' starts out with a chorus that references the
'Dale Gas' ("make an effort", "go hard") expression to great effect.
'Dale Gas, homie/ Hechale Gasolina/
A quemar a todos/ con estas pinchas rimas /
Dale Gas, homie/ Donde esta la mota//
Para fumar un toque de la mas fina/
Dale Gas, homie/ Hechale Gasolina/
Dale gasolina/ tambien la heroina/
Lo que sale de mi boca/ pura llamas finas'
Drug references - for those at the margins of conventional reality - get tagged along to those old 'refranes y dichos' so dear to the culture, having an equal weight on the album's lyrics. The experience is as literary or cultural as it is sonic.
Surprises & Features: Yosie Lokote's post-humous verse.
One of the most menacing rap songs we’ve ever heard. "Las Calles", a Veneno song with a post humous Yosie Lokote verse, offers a perfect contrast in style and cadence between the two rappers. Yosie, deliberate and slow, while Veneno occupied a difference cadence at mid tempo to match the message that Chicano rap wouldn't stop with a single death. Rewarding for those listeners observing Mexico’s violent reality intently.
Sounding like an action movie theme, another highlight off the album was 'Tiempos Duros', where Conejo makes a guest appearance. Both rappers alter their voice with a pitch modulator. The lyrics take on a more sinister tone this way and make it easier to visualize the thems. The song outro is a synth pitch effect that adds to the drama, slicing a snippet from 'Blow' to maximize the effect. A killer ride, that wouldn't be out of place in a video game opening, which should signal to the new listener what a unique experience the songs offer.
Feel the Funk off 'Favela 4'.