Dreezy was on a silent killing-spree last year, building on organic momentum she had gained as Chicago’s next virtuoso. Dancing, rapping, singing—her skill set often felt incredibly underrated. Last year’s string of high-quality singles, featuring the likes of Gucci Mane and T-Pain, lead to a fantastic debut album that, as shown by the aforementioned singles, balanced unyielding drill cuts with slower R&B joints. On paper, it probably looks like this run was abruptly ended by the woman who’s currently sitting atop the Billboard charts: Bronx native, Cardi B.
Rap has been a male-dominated genre since its inception, and it seems as if labels only ever want there to be room for one mainstream female rapper. Nicki Minaj boasts her fair share of harder cuts, but she was always pushed as a pop artist (even though most of her pure rapping songs are better than her slower jams), leaving a void in the culture begging to be occupied by another down-to-earth, no-fucks-given female rapper. We’ve already discussed the enigma that is “Bodak Yellow:” proud, defiant and biting in her unfiltered delivery, Cardi B’s chart-topping single is the soundtrack to a classic American underdog story.
But if you felt like you were rooting for an underdog when praising Cardi, you’ll soon come to realize that Dreezy is the biggest underdog in the game right now and one of the most under-appreciated rappers period, regardless of gender. It’s safe to say everyone is ecstatic about Cardi’s success, and we don’t aim to pit female rappers against each other. Pop culture always likes to sniff out beef even when there is none, and we would hate to do the same. Instead, what we’d rather do is spend some well-deserved time with Dreezy’s own arsenal of hard-hitting raps. For this list, we chose to hone in on a few of the songs that possess the same competitive energy of “Bodak Yellow:”
Aptly featured on her 2014 mixtape Schizo, “Schizophrenia” is a track where Dreezy really digs deep and delivers a vivid and introspective look at her own vulnerable side. Don’t sleep on her rhymes though—this song is a prime example of her superior pen game and the words are delivered with precision through an emotionally charged flow.
On her version of the oft-remixed “Chiraq,” Dreezy delivers an absolute lyrical onslaught while unflinchingly repping her hometown. It played a major role in framing her as one of the city’s most prominent voices, and she used this platform to lay claim to the title of “Queen of Chiraq.” At the very least, this track proved she could easily rap alongside Chiraq’s finest.
“From Now On”
“From Now On” is a gripping highlight from Dreezy’s 2015 EP of the same name. Dreezy shows off her versatility here, and her slow-yet-authoritative delivery lets you catch every single punchline. She lets her unique flow shine on the track and even has time to fire off some sneak disses at her competitors.
A literal nonstop barrage of scathing bars over a minimal trap beat, if you’re still questioning Dreezy’s rapping ability, this is the track to make you a believer. Brimming with witty punchlines, Dreezy executes a number of flows to show off her venomous lyrics. Nobody is safe on this three-minute rap clinic.
One of her more under-appreciated cuts, “Boss” features a haunting backdrop that’s fitting for the unabashed chorus. The flow on this track is reminiscent of fellow Chi-Town native G Herbo (who is incidentally featured on the remix), but she makes it her own, similarly to Cardi B owning Kodak’s “No Flockin” flow. This is another display of Dreezy’s lyrical prowess but also further proof of her ability to make drill anthems that stand the test of time. This may not have the mainstream appeal of “Bodak Yellow,” but she shows a level of raw emotion that’s worth noting.
“Spazz” is a deeper cut from her impressive debut studio album, No Hard Feelings. For this track, Dreezy incorporates a laid-back, nonchalant flow, a breath of fresh air in this era of rampant biting. Admittedly, there is a hint of 21 Savage’s distinct cadence in this song, but it’s not so familiar that it feels stale.
The eerie minimalism of 808 Mafia’s production on “F.D.N.” is perfect for Dreezy’s untapped potential. Empowered and fierce, Dreezy turns the table on the men in her life with these braggadocios rhymes.
“All the Time”
On “All the Time,” Dreezy leaves behind her reserved crooning for a vicious, cutthroat delivery. The menacing instrumental adds a certain mystique to the overall feel of the track and Dreezy comes prepared to take on this soundscape with four minutes of fury. At one point, she takes a cheeky sub at rappers who have jacked her style: “And these rappers sound like me, when they gonna give me back the flow that I leant to them?” Dreezy remains underrated, but “All The Time” is a clear indication that she’s here to stay.