Chris Smith Jr. raps really well. While his name might not be the most distinctive, his raw talent more than makes up for lack of invention (and besides, it’s not as if Young Thug needed an imaginative name to make some of the most thrilling music of the last three years).
Smith’s “Griffey” puts a lively spin on hip-hop’s recent fixation with dance music rhythms and tempos, marrying a jazzy bass line and rich, shifting instrumentation with a house-like pulse. It’s the perfect backdrop for Smith’s varied flows. Though more an exercise in style than substance, “Griffey” is infectiously bouncy, effortlessly executed and energetic without sacrificing complexity or uniqueness.