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R.A.P. Ferreira, 'ours'

This #NowPlaying pick comes courtesy of Heat Check.

Few rappers seem to love rap as much as R.A.P. Ferreira. The artist formerly known as milo is such a meticulous writer that his rhymes exude the care put into them, but he is also an allusive penman that is constantly thinking of other thinkers, the ideas they might bring to notions of rhythm and symmetry and lyricism, the lessons their work might imprint upon his — and anyone else's. "ours" is a prime example of studiousness becoming craft, the 10,000 hours manifesting. Over a wonky-sounding piano-mash, courtesy of Rose Noir, Ferreira performs with the looseness of someone relying on muscle memory. "Most disastrous motive, wrote this letter to them pacifist poets / In my bag is an understatement / Retract it, I keep ready to blaze like a matchstick / Blood-soaked cowboy, down to my last tin of Altoids / They'll say this was a stream of consciousness / I was simply a being, being honest," he raps. Even if you don't know he belongs among the greats, it's clear that he does.

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Sheldon Pearce
[Copyright 2024 NPR]