Obviously, there’s an overflow of talent pouring out of the California music scene, but this is nothing new if you’re even remotely familiar with music in general. When it comes to the various Rap acts hailing from the coastal state, I’ve always been a fan of all the different vibey, synthy offerings that have come out over the years, which actually makes it tough for me to single out an individual artist who I favor over the rest. While MBNel is a slightly newer name for me, he has quickly risen through the ranks and become one of my absolute favorite talents due to the incorporation of his individualistic backstory and sheer skills, among many other things.
One of the songs I was most excited for when I saw the tracklist for Child of the Trenches II prior to its release featured Fenix Flexin, one of the most notable West Coast acts you can think of, and this record, called “Alley Oop”, exceeded any of my expectations tenfold. Luckily, the duo linked up once again to bring this song to life in the form of a brand-new music video, directed by Carrington, and I couldn’t be more excited. As the visual begins to take shape, the camera slowly zooms in on MBNel, who’s sitting on a couch in a room that is actually engulfed in flames.
While most people would run for an exit, he remains on the couch as if nothing out of the ordinary is happening, staying calm, cool, and collected in the midst of this hazard. The camera continues to zoom in past MBNel, focusing on the television that transports us to another scene where the two talents begin to recite their lyrics and vibe off of one another. As Fenix begins to spit his bars, scenes constantly rotate from a setting in the same room that was once full of fire, another night vision scene with the two emcees, and another place where the two artists hang out on top of a shipping container surrounded by their squad. Throughout every scene, Fenix is holding stacks of cash while wearing Stone Island and a huge chain around his neck, literally flexin his wealth.
Throughout every scene, the camera shakes and vibrates along with the piercing 808s, elevating this portion of the instrumental incredibly. As MBNel comes in for his verse, he can be seen in most of the same scenes as Fenix, and his unbelievably unphased disposition stands out despite the chaotic nature of the beat and camera work. Although there are only a few different shots used throughout, both artists do more than carry their own weight and prove why MBNel can not only hang with the big dogs in the West Coast music scene but rather stand out amongst them if that’s what he needs to do.
One of the other reasons MBNel has been making waves in the Rap scene is because of the fact that he’s an absolute workhorse, dropping off project after project as if he doesn’t even sleep, but rather raps 24/7. Child of the Trenches II, his most recent cohesive EP, was a great addition to his plethora of offerings considering it allowed him to not only show off his dexterity and talents but also go even deeper into the narratives that have shaped him into the person he is today. Whether he’s telling ruthless stories from the streets or exciting, captivating tales of triumph, no topic seemed to be off-limits, and it’s because of this that it’s an absolutely mandatory listen. Whether you’ve been in tune with MBNel since he took the scene by storm or this is your introduction, “Alley Oop” featuring Fenix Flexin is one of the most intriguing music videos you’ll see all day, so make sure you peep the brand-new visual as soon as you get the chance.
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