OK, The Hamburger Helper Mixtape For April Fool's Day Is Actually Really Good
If you're looking for an exciting new rap flavor to get into, don't think human — think mascot. That's right: ever since food brand Hamburger Helper's glove mascot Lefty dropped a five-track mixtape on Soundcloud, Watch The Stove, the Internet at large has been showing Lefty some serious (g)love. The album's not just a marketing masterclass in how to do April Fool's Day right, either — but it's also a musical masterpiece, with production covered by producers DEQUEXATRON X000, Retro Spectro, illwin, Realistic Productions, GenReal, and @itsdandy, plus lyrics like "I don’t want no beef unless it’s ’bout those cheeks.” To say the least, it'll keep food-rap lovers coming back for second and third helpings. The rapper whose vocals are heard in the tracks has not been named — though, of course, we all know it's Lefty, right?
The album was a local effort: the LA Times has reported on how General Mills, Hamburger Helper's parent company, is based in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and they reached out to a local music school to ask if students would be interested on working on the five-track EP. There were just a few guidelines: The songs had to be family-friendly and not include curse words. This just goes to show rap music is changing, with unlikely new contenders like ready-made-food company vying for musical supremacy.
However, just because the songs are family-friendly, that doesn't mean the songs don't have real influences from rap music and R&B. There's no getting around it: Lefty's mixtape is fire, and it's partially due in part to all of the references to rap music stars and songs that it includes.
So, what influences does it include? Let's take a look at a few:
The mixtape's title, Watch The Stove, is clearly a play on Jay Z and Kanye West's Watch The Throne. Also, the track list?
Total Kanye West:
Impossible to deny.
Track One: "Feed The Streets"
On crafting this musical masterpiece, I reckon Lefty had one guiding influence: Go trap or go home. This track's major influence, in my opinion? The Drake/Future collaboration, "Jumpman."
Track Two: "Hamburger Helper"
Lefty's clearly had Fetty Wap's "Trap Queen" on loop on the drive to the studio to record this track.
Track Three: "Crazy"
Just me or does this sound like pure Kool Keith circa "Livin' Astro"?
Track Four: "Food For Your Soul"
The underrated classic of the album. The lackluster listening figures don't reflect the track's debt to one of the giants of rap: This is so '90s Dr. Dre, circa "Nuthin' But A G Thang."
Track Five: "In Love With The Glove"
Pure R&B smooth grooves. I mean, hard to nail down one specific track that this reminds me of, but in general? Usher when he indulges in some slow-jam ballads.
All in all — great job, everyone. I thought the next big EP I'd be excited about would be from someone like Beyoncé or Frank Ocean, but hey, I guess this is better music to move your buns to.
Images: Hamburger Helper/Soundcloud (1)