If you’ve paid any attention whatsoever to the Hip-Hop movement taking over California for the past few years, you should be almost too familiar with Shoreline Mafia by now. They’ve been making more than just waves for years and at this point, they’ve amassed a huge following all over the country. After releasing multiple mixtapes as a group as well as individual songs and projects, they decided to come together one final time and release their debut studio album Mafia Bidness, which is expected to be released at the end of this month. While this news is exciting, it’s also bittersweet because it marks the departure of one of the group’s standouts, Fenix Flexin. I’m excited to see what he’ll do in his individual career, but I just love the chemistry that the group has together, so it’s going to be different not seeing him on any of the Mafia’s projects moving forward.
As we prepare for the highly anticipated release of the group’s forthcoming album, however, we have been blessed with a new single entitled “Change Ya Life”. I realize that this came out on Friday, but it was a holiday weekend and I was listening to this track basically the entire time, so just relax and enjoy the music. While one of my favorite things about Shoreline is their adaptability to many different styles of production, this track proves my point once again. This is done through a very touching beat made up of emotionally charged synths, moving piano keys, and of course, some booming 808s that add a nice upbeat rhythm for the group to do their thing. I say group, but this song actually only contains vocals from OhGeesy and Fenix, so it’s really just the duo this time around. As OhGeesy takes over the hook, his delivery is nonchalant and relaxed per usual, but his voice does have a hint of sentiment behind his words that brings out a bit more enthusiasm than I was expecting.
As Fenix’s verse begins, the instrumental switches up slightly, and a deep, powerful synth is added in for a bit of a refresher as well as a distinct moment that divides the chorus and the verse. To begin with, Fenix’s lines are spoken in segments and he allows some time to breathe in between each bar. His voice is confident, deep, and unphased as he makes his way through his lyrics that actually manage to rhyme more than one word in each line, making his delivery more complex and appealing than one might’ve originally thought. As he makes his way throughout his verse, Fenix covers topics like living an extravagant life and balling out, but he also mentions how trust issues and other problems come along with this lifestyle because you never know who’s truly genuine anymore.
OhGeesy comes in for the second verse fresh off of another hook, and he uses a flow that isn’t necessarily new to him, but it’s one of my favorite cadences that he uses by far. During his part, he speaks the first few words in each line a bit quicker before slowing up and stretching out the pronunciation of the lyrics at the end of each bar. I’m not sure why I enjoy it so much, but I’ve never really heard any other rapper use this flow in such a flawless, effortless fashion so it just makes it that much better when Geesy does it so easily. As for his lyrics, OhGeesy talks about all of his connections and people he knows from his life both in music and in the streets but then goes further into his braggadocious lifestyle of being able to buy himself and his girls whatever they want.
While Shoreline Mafia doesn’t stray too far from their normal lyrical content or West Coast styles typically, they just carry themselves in such a unique way that other artists making similar music can’t. Each and every member, even if they weren’t in this song this time around, has such an uncharacteristic and unteachable swag within their music that might sound cliché or lame when I say it out loud, but it’s understood as soon as you turn on literally any one of their tracks. Each member also brings a different style and sound to the table and they always manage to not only complement one another but elevate each other’s skillsets in order to truly bring the best out in their counterparts. I absolutely can’t wait to see what Mafia Bidness is going to bring to the party at the end of this month, but I have no doubt in my mind that it’ll be something crazy. If you didn’t have the chance over this past weekend, make sure you tune into Shoreline Mafia’s most recent single “Chance Ya Life”.