Kool A.D. of Das Racist headed to Oakland to cut his second mixtape of 2012, but he clearly brought along the stoned flows and dense, hyper-referential punchlines that made his crew internet famous: "Hard to read like a cryptogram/Lady Gaga, Poker Face, chips in hand," he rhymes on the Dipset-esque Marvin Gaye-sampling "No". Producer Amaze 88's quirky soul loops are all highlights, but the project veers off course when A.D.
“With Nehru Jackets and 51 out maybe people can realize we're not the same fucking person”—Himanshu “Heems” Suri, Das Racist Despite the two principle members having distinct personalities, despite them both saying their names on their songs all the time, and despite them having a song about how (predominantly white) people can’t tell them apart, people still don’t see Das Racist members as individual people. Early (and even recent) reviews confused MCs Heems and Victor “Kool A. D.
Kool A.D. grew up in San Francisco-- while this is a well-known fact, it's not one that's acknowledged particularly often. It's understandable considering Das Racist have become entrenched in N.Y.'s cultural milieu in so many different ways that their music has been embraced as something like a metaphor for a certain kind of lifestyle in the city. You can ascertain Victor Vazquez's Cali roots as a matter of relativity, being that Queens native Heems is more assertive as both a rapper and as a media presence.
Taking only the aimless, half-baked stumble that was his first solo mixtape, Palm Wine Drinkard, it would seem that Das Racist’s Kool A.D. (a.k.a. Victor Vazquez) didn’t have the chops that it took to thrive on his own. There was barely any rapping on Drinkard, and the futurist, wobbly R&B that dominated the tape didn’t have much punch.