Hey! Tiny mini-trend #4351 (see: rappers getting all worked up and cold-eyed over menacing, tightly looped guitar riffs) got a little bigger! First the Clipse and Kanye’s “Kinda Like a Big Deal“; then Lil Wayne’s “Spit”; and now, we can add the absolutely fearsome remix to Baby’s “Always Strapped,” which also features Lil Wayne, Rick Ross, and Young Jeezy. This song has floated around for a while–there was a Wayne mixtape years ago with a version of “Strapped,” and Jeezy’s recent Trappin Ain’t Dead had Jeezy’s verse from the song on it. But the production–by Mr. Beatz and Grand Hustle’s Lil’ C–sounds ultra contemporary, courtesy of this tight little wave of dramatic, rocked-out rap songs that have been highlights in 2009.
Ross is typically goofy here (“Spend a night with me baby, you can write a book,” he says, which is ironic, because I’m pretty sure his baby’s mother did exactly that). Wayne, meanwhile, increasingly only sounds comfortable and motivated over stuff like this: this is his lane now. Jeezy’s verse is the real highlight though. He’s got on his band pants: “Why you call ’em band pants? ‘Cause they got them bands in it! / Would’ve called it gram pants if it had them grams in it.” Which maybe you need to hear the ecstatic way he delivers that bit of new slang, exclamation points very much included. It’s version 2.0 of Jay-Z’s boast on “Swagger Like Us”–skinny jeans just don’t do the trick when you’re carrying around huge amounts of money. But band pants do. Applause all around. [via NMC]