The Guys are a unique duo from Chicago. Where most rappers seem to have an easy time slotting into one category or another, the duo of Fya Starta and Smelly LP have no discernible, consistent thread running through their music. It's chameleon-ic to a pretty startling degree, each track a costume: One moment, Fya Starta is producing juke beats for Lil Durk to rap over. The next, he's dropping No Limit tribute songs. Together, The Guys have released tracks that sound like early '00s Just Blaze NYC mixtape jams, salutes to Death Certificate-era Ice Cube, straight-up ZMoney imitations, and, now, Chicago bop tracks.
"Flee" is the best of them all (well...except maybe the Durk joint) because Chicago bop music has one real purpose. It's a genre of mercenary impulses, teenagers reaching shamelessly for dance music's cheery pop jugular. And "shameless" is thus far The Guys' MO, a willingness to do whatever to get whatever result, like Internet-era Jermaine Dupri's in miniature, making up for a shortcoming of vision with irreverent audacity.
It's The Guys' immediate sense for the rules of whatever genre they happen to be jumping into that lets them push those characteristics to absurdist extremes. Stunt Taylor's "Fefe on the Block" envisions bop in its most conservative sense, as a minor variation on ATL swag rap, relying solely on an effervescent hook and Chicago street slang to differentiate itself from the mean. Sicko Mobb's "Fiesta" is the song that best describes the genre's aesthetic center, a psychedelic, uptempo molly trip. "Flee," meanwhile, is on the genre's radical end, stimulants laced in bop's dilated-pupil serotonin rush, a hyperactive giddiness that slows down for none.
The kettle drums sound like a callback to "Crank Dat (Soulja Boy)," and appropriately enough, the video for "Flee" (which includes people watching videos in the video) is a callback to the "Crank Dat" video, which did the same. (For those too old for "Crank Dat," think the "Scenario" video.)