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Album Review: “Andy Mineo & Wordsplayed Present: Magic & Bird”

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Album Review: “Andy Mineo & Wordsplayed Present: Magic & Bird”

Andy & Wordsplayed A.K.A. “Magic & Bird”

Under Reach Records and Miner League, Andy Mineo & Wordsplayed has dropped their long anticipated collaboration mixtape “Magic & Bird”. The name derives from famous basketball legends Magic Johnson and Larry Bird, who was a dynamic duo in the 1980’s, hence the sports reference of the album cover and singles they dropped promoting the project. Andy Mineo and Wordsplayed has collaborated a lot ever since starting Miner League. From Martinelli & Lay Up (which is a bonus track of the mixtape) and Andy appearing on Wordsplayed’s song Wah Gwan and appearing in the Sammy Sosa music video. A compilation project was certainly in the making!

The mixtape opens up with a funny skit by Andy Mineo using a voice of a vintage basketball video game announcer, taking us 90s kids back to NBA Jams (if you don’t know that game, you just showed your age). The intro moves to Andy voicing as a coach by the name of Coach Girthman. He talks about the importance of teamwork and uses a lot of funny metaphors and similes to get his point across. With the funny voice and motivation, it got me excited to continue listening to the mixtape! The other skits Disqus & Metro are all hilarious! Disqus is a speech by Andy about not giving up, just like how he didn’t give up throwing a discus, which is something like a heavy frisbee used in the Olympics. Metro is about losing a MetroCard (a MetroCard is what New Yorkers use to get around the city) and then coming to a place of trusting God. All these skits are funny, but also have great messages as they transition from song to song!

The first song of the mixtape is their single “Kidz”. Andy went from doing it for the Friends & Family, to do it for the kids! His music is kid friendly, so it makes sense! The production is amazing! My only critique about the song is that although Wordsplayed started off the song with great energy, it died down as his verse was going. I felt like Andy had to pick up the energy when his verse was next.

Dunk Contest (Magic Bird) is basically the title track of the mixtape. This song is full of punchlines, bars, wordplay on sports and turnt up production! The rappers share each verse as they go back and forth with their bars. Who do you think won the “dunk contest”?

Say Less, a track produced by Gawvi is a New York anthem! “Say less” is common New York slang often used when you understand someone fully and clearly and you don’t need any of their further explanation.

Tracks like R.U.T.S. (Run Up The Score) & Break Bread are both tracks about the grind & hustle. R.U.T.S. is about pushing through the grind in the process. The field of rap is a very competitive sport. A lot of people don’t stay in it. This song is great for aspiring rappers and creatives alike that are in the midst of the grind! For those who weren’t paying attention, Andy’s verse is from the Stranger Things remix he dropped last September, with added production. Break Bread is the celebration of the grind! Andy & Wordsplayed shares their grind stories from selling merch from garbage bags and building up their brands individually.

The message of these songs? ANYBODY can win! There should’ve been a skit about that…just saying…

I absolutely love the way Judo starts! The sample Gawvi created was pure genius! The song is a metaphor of the Japanese martial art Judo. It is full of punchlines, bars, metaphors and it’s fun to listen to. Dance (You See It) is another fun song with barely a message. Andy definitely destroyed this track! No knock on Wordsplayed, but Andy came, heard and conquered!

“Team”  is basically a continuation from the first skit “Hi Five (Loading)” when Andy’s character Coach Grithman was talking about the importance of teamwork. Reggae artist Beam takes the first verse of the track over the mellow part of the production, into the chorus. Then Andy’s verse brings the bass, hi-hats, and kicks in, adding the intensity of the track. The transition was dope! Beam’s chorus refers to scriptures if you paid attention. When he said “Two put ten thousand to flight”, it’s a reference to the Psalm 91. And when he said “A three stranded cord holds its bind”, it’s a reference to Ecclesiastes 4:12.

So guys, even with the heavy sports themes on the mixtape, they still mention biblical themes and Jesus, just so there is no confusion! Got it? Great! Let’s continue the review!

Last track is the dopest and only stand out track of the mixtape. Legend opens up with a skit from Andy and Wordsplayed as coaches with a motivating speech about showing the evidence of the grind, hard work, and labor. In the words of Andy:

“If you want the glory, you gotta sweat!”

The chorus features a sample with DJ scratches, giving that old school vibe. Andy and Wordsplayed rap about their success becoming legends in the making. The track ends with Wordsplayed as Coach Boomer continuing on the sweat showing evidence of the grind.

The bonus track of the mixtape is Lay Up. It was released years ago after the release of Andy’s 2014 EP “Neverland”. This song is actually Andy’s song featuring Wordsplayed. Because of the sports references as well as the term “lay up” is on the song, it seems fitting to put it on the mixtape as a bonus track.

Overall, “Magic & Bird” is a very fun mixtape to listen to! It’s also a work out playlist. Every song on the tape (including the skits) could be added into anybody’s workout playlist. The only thing I didn’t like too much about the tape was most of the songs sounded the same. My problem with trap music is that it sounds the same sometimes. In this case, most of the songs sounded the same. That is why I loved songs like Team and Legend, especially Legend. This mixtape does not have a lot of memorable moments expect all the hilarious skits, to make it a classic in my opinion, but it’s definitely a mixtape you can work out to and have fun with!

 

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