Review: CyHi The Prynce's "Ivy League: Kick Back"

Review: CyHi The Prynce's "Ivy League: Kick Back"

Atlanta Rapper CyHi The Prynce offers up a solid follow up to last year's "Ivy League Club" mixtape with "Ivy League: Kick Back."

Kanye West has certainly gathered a nice squad of lyricists over at G.O.O.D. Music. None fit in better than CyHi The Prynce. Following the release of his fellow G.O.O.D. Music compadre Pusha T's Wrath of Cocaine mixtape, the Atlanta rapper drops Ivy League: Kick Back, which is a follow up to his widely popular Ivy League Club mixtape that was released to great fanfare in 2012.

The Kick Back tour takes us on a trip to Princeton University. CyHi opens up the mixtape, hosted by DJ Holiday, with "Kick Back Music," a laid back song where one can easily close their eyes and visualize walking through the campus on the way to Nassau Hall or a late-night impromptu party in a dorm room. Through the Kick Back tour, CyHi proves that he has the lyrics to keep up with the likes of Pusha T, Common and Big Sean. Though he is quick to point out he is "not a street nigga but a nigga who was on the streets," The Prynce is remarkably at home when he's preaching about growing up on the rough side of the neighborhood. Julie Andrews' "My Favorite Things" is the inspiration behind the rapper's track of the same name, but of course this ATLien values things quite differently than the British actress and singer had in mind: "Pistols and robberies and strippers from Bolly's/ A few bricks from poppy/ Lambos and Rarris/ Chevys and Caddys and Cutlass Supremes/ These are a few of our favorite things."

Kick Back captures the sound and feel of a lazy weekend on a university campus while still staying true to CyHi's rugged and gritty childhood streets. A great collab with Trae Tha Truth, "Round The Corner" explains what really goes down on the corner. The two Southern rappers have met their yin to their yang, with Trae's quick flow providing the perfect juxtaposition to Cy's slow drawl. Taking the classic 'Mary Jane'  putting his own spin on this ode to the sticky, which gave him a means to the end of being broke. It's only right to have fellow marijuana connoisseur Smoke DZA grace the track.

The G.O.O.D. Music rapper has fun throughout the 20-song mixtape. In the title track "Kick Back," CyHi plans a raver worthy of any fraternity worth their Greek letters. Although the Diamond-assisted "Sexy" feels right at home on this mixtape, other songs that focus on the opposite sex like "Occupy Your Mind," "Big Headed Bitches," "Pillow Talk and "I'm Catching Feelings" falls short. The Prynce is at his best when he's firmly planted on the streets as is evident on "Far Removed: "Shit I know some folks that know some folks/ They thought I was a conscious rapper/ 'Cause I ain't take the dope approach?/ That's 'cause I know some folks that tote the toast/ That's close to blow that move that Costra Nostra coke from coast to coast."

Features on Kick Back are relatively light in comparison to the norm of having a mixtape heavily loaded with guest appearances. 2 Chainz is the only G.O.O.D. Music who appears.  B.o.B., Big K.R.I.T., Yelawolf, Travis Porter,  and Childish Gambino also share the spotlight on Kick Back. The overall production is handled by a wide array of capable hands including Lex Luger, Beat Billionaire, The Audibles, Arkatek Beats and many more.

One of the stand-out tracks is the ode to Atlanta remix to "A-Town" featuring fellow A-Town rappers 2 Chainz, B.o.B. and Travis Porter. This loud and brash track is the audible version of a marching band stomping down the football field, proud to be wearing their school colors.

Kick Back picks up right where Ivy League Club left off at. Even if you've never had the college experience, CyHi's latest release is somehow nostalgic, a welcome trip down memory lane even as it detours through the hood.

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