Hip-Hop Mix Tape Exhibits the Many Sides of Blinded
By the Way My Name Is … the new mix tape by local hip-hop artist Blinded clocks in at a lean 30 minutes. Over that short span of time, he meanders through multiple styles. The first “act” channels Kanye as Blinded raps to cribbed beats like Estelle’s American Boy and the Late Registration track Touch the Sky, nailing the held syllable mid-word flow that is Kanye’s signature. Sadly, this part of the album also contains the most insidious of all Kanye-isms, the chipmunk sung hook on Swinger Party. The short second act of the record takes us to mid-90s west coast rap with funk samples and heavy bass over slow beats. The final (and strongest) act finds Blinded stylistically sounding more like his Midwestern hip-hop compatriots. In the place of Kanye and west coast are actual stories, life lessons, piano loops, and horn samples. On a whole, this mix tape doesn’t flow together particularly well, but has some tracks that stand well on their own, in which the talented rapper finds his own voice and has something to say.