One my first memories of Soopah Eype was at a house party show in Eugene a few years ago.
He was performing in front of a dark living room full of tipsy college kids (not including myself, of course) and rapping out of a couple banged up, woodgrain speakers. From my understanding, it was one of his first shows.
After only a few songs, Soop, adorned in a goofy silk collared shirt, told his DJ to cut the music. A few kids were talking in the back. He yelled a couple of profanities in the microphone and stormed out of the house.
It only took a couple minutes for the party to get going again (Four Loko’s a hell of a drug), but I could still see Soop pacing outside the house’s window, looking frustrated—even a little hurt.
To me, this memory sums up the Los Angeles-born MC perfectly: Beneath his rough exterior and his aura of intellect, the guy really just wants people to hear his music and understand what he’s trying to do.
And hearing “The Weight,” a single off his newest mixtape, El Planeta Del Los Simios, you can understand why. The track is built on a classic hip-hop formula that Soop has mastered over the past couple years: dense lyricism over crackling sample-based production. In this case, harsh criticisms of fellow MCs are layered against critiques of wider issues, like racism and conflicts abroad.
Of course, the real draw to the track, along with Soop’s music in general, is his slippery growl of a delivery. When he says lines like “chewing through MCs like a pack of Wrigley,” you can’t help but scrunch up your face in pleasurable disgust.
I’ve been to many Soopah Eype shows since that one in Eugene (he now lives in Portland). He has yet to storm off stage again, even in instances when people were talking. He’s also ditched the silk shirt. But “The Weight” shows that his hunger has not diminished a bit.
If you want to hear the PDLS mixtape in full form, check it out for free here.