Although the mixtape doesn’t deliver the highs of Westside’s last project, it is still a solid project with strong wordplay throughout.
When thinking about Westside Gunn, my mind jumps to street lyricism and a throwback to the 1990s, like Gunn is an estranged nephew of the Wu-Tang Clan. Gunn’s sophomore album, Supreme Blientele (a Ghostface Killah reference) found Westside Gunn establish himself as a 90’s revivalist with his grimy, New York beats with basic drum patterns and a focus on word play. Having signed to Shady record in 2017 (with his brother Benny the Butcher), it has been interesting watching the development of Westside and Benny.
However, I feel this is where Hitler Wears Hermes VI has an issue. Hitler Wears Hermes IV and Supreme Blientele were important in creating the Westside Gunn brand and the high quality expected from it, and so when just a solid project is released it feels even more flat as a result.
The album features great production from Evidence and DJ Muggs, icons in the underground hip-hop scene. However, the only real standout production was the inspired choice on the ‘B.I.G. Luther Freestyle’ of the sampling of Luther Vandross, feeding into the theme of the track in a creative and fresh way.
Up to this point, this review does seem negative, but it truly isn’t. This is a solid, well rounded EP from rappers at the cutting edge of the underground scene. However, it just doesn’t come close to his sophomore outing and as a result just seems ‘OK’, and nowhere near the progression we saw in Hitler Wears Hermes IV. If you want some 1990’s throwback street style raps, breaking down drug dealing and violence with creative lyricism and unique outlooks then I recommend this album highly. However, it does feel drowned by the slew of large hip-hop releases coming out around the same time.