In an era where most rap is the carefree warbling of teenagers and young adults, Dave East offers a talented and modern alternative. While his raps are firmly rooted in more ’90s-style sensibilities, Dave looks, dresses, acts and sounds like a millennial, which all makes for an interesting and talented mix that breathes life into New York rap every time he steps in front of a mic.
Nearly a year after his last release, the impressive Kairi Chanel, East is back with the first project to be released in his multi-million dollar Def Jam deal Paranoia. The deal with Def Jam is newsworthy in its own right, as most new artists these days spurn labels and remain independent, but East chose to partner up with Def Jam and as he recently told Billboard, he’s “waving that flag for Def Jam” proudly.
For Paranoia — which he has made clear is not his “debut album” — East gets help from a few superstars and legends as the project features appearances from Young Jeezy, Chris Brown, Wiz Khalifa, French Montana and his mentor Nas. While he has teased a collaboration with Drake recently, that doesn’t show up here so maybe he’s saving that for his true “debut album.”
Stream Dave East’s Paranoia below or on Apple Music now.