Odd Future emcee Hodgy Beats is back with his first solo mixtape since 2013’s Untitled 1 + 2. In name at least, Dena Tape 2, links back to Hodgy’s 2009 debut, The Dena Tape— the OFWGKTA crew’s oft-overlooked inaugural release. Given that Hodgy has since been known primarily for his collaborations (MellowHype and MellowHigh) and guest spots on other OF projects, spotlighting Hodgy’s evolution as a solo artist is a smart and, evidently, deliberate move. In a recent interview with HipHopDX, the Hodgemeister discussed he and producer Left Brain‘s decision to stop releasing collaborations under the MellowHype moniker:
“I believe we’re individuals…[W]e work together [but] everybody needs their own identity. It’s a big refocus. Nah, we ain’t breaking up. Nah, this ain’t no weirdo shit. It’s just some real shit. It’s a refocus. Going from boys to men this is what it is.”
It is fitting, then, that Dena Tape 2 is Hodgy’s most incisive and introspective work to date. HakuemeniB, in particular, is both a sober examination of his reputation as a hotheaded wild man (“See Hodgy, he’s really compulsive…”) and a thank you to fans for sticking out his (often literal) highs and lows. Elsewhere, Moneyball borrows the somber beat from Kendrick’s heartbreaking GKMC closer Sing About Me. This is not to say, however, that Dena Tape 2 is a particularly dark affair– Tyler, the Creator and Earl Sweatshirt have both mined heavier territory– just that it was clearly penned and edited by a grown man, not a stoned teenager. My fave cuts, Wild Boy and If I Say So, actually find Hodgy at his livest, crisply tearing through bangers from Marvel Alexander and N****s In Paris producer Hit-Boy, respectively. Hear Dena Tape 2 below and get the deets from The FADER here.
Though for whatever reason not included in the Official OFWGKTA Soundcloud playlist, most tracklistings indicate that Dena Tape 2 features a verse from Hodgy’s Odd Future brethren/MellowHigh collaborator Domo Genesis.
Like what you hear? Dena Tape 2 is free for the downloadin’ from Soundcloud!