Joe Budden ain't having it.
Joe Budden, the easily-perturbed half of the two music and culture commentators on Complex's Everyday Struggle, is known for being a man of divisive opinions. His mic drops during interviews and controversial shows of public support (or not) to artists like XXXTentacion has earned him just as many detractors as it has admirers. Today, he was locked on a new target: Chance the Rapper. The context? Discussing the merits, sonically and otherwise, of the new, yet-to-be-released song that he performed on Stephen Colbert's Late Show last night (September 25th). In a nutshell, Budden thought Chance's performance, and the song as a whole, was "too positive."
"The tone of voice ... come on now," said the "Pump It Up" rapper, going into a whiny, off-beat impression of the Chicago emcee's slam poetry-style delivery. "What is that voice?" According to Budden, Chance the Rapper lost some of the hard edge that is typically admired and/or coveted in the hip-hop game, something that the show host suggests that he rekindle as soon as possible. "This positive Chance s**t, that n**** better go back to Chicago [...] I want a G Herbo feature - this is too positive." Joe later admitted to loving both Chance and Daniel Caesar, the artist who accompanied the Chi-town sensation on guitar during his Late Show appearance. Clearly though, that wasn't enough for Budden.
Using the terms "spoken word rap" and "quiet storm medley," it's clear that Budden had designs on tearing this new song apart, piece by piece. Both DJ Akademiks and the show's moderator/den mother Nadeska Alexis both seemed to be without the strength to reel Budden in and have a level-headed conversation on the topic. Alexis even said she understood if Chance didn't want to come on the show. The reaction from the veteran rapper is strange, since after his big, party-ready single "Pump It Up," Budden has been known for crafting more introspective, thoughtful rap music that's less focused on being "hard" as it is on being truthful. Whether or not he'll be able to see that in Chance's new music, this song notwithstanding, is something that be interesting to watch unfold.
Watch Chance's performance from Colbert's show below.