Google hates the name Bop Menaxe. It thinks you spelled “menace” wrong. It thinks you are looking for Kidz Bop. I even got an Instagram account for somebody who is clearly not Bop Menaxe on the third try. All you have to do is look at the cover art for “Different Design” and whoever that other Bop is (who to his credit apparently has his own record label is) to know this isn’t the same dude. After some extensive digging I finally determined that Bop Menaxe is a protege of YFN Lucci, who is currently incarcerated on a 105 count RICO indictment, so unless Lucci’s lawyer does some extensive legal maneuvering it will probably be up to Menaxe to carry on his legacy.
At least “Sang” is a good indication of why Google gets confused, because Bop has a parody of the Menace II Society movie logo tattooed on his chest. The track is just barely over two minutes but I like the mellow track and the straight forward lyrics. The vocals aren’t too heavily tuned up, Bop keeps the beat and delivers his words well, it’s acceptable. It’s nothing that lights my world on fire but also nothing that makes me think I wasted two minutes of my life that I won’t get back.
Long time veteran DJ Bigga Rankin provided the intro to the title track/previous single on “Different Design” and it’s a clear sign that Bop Menaxe is leveling up quickly, whether or not Google’s algorithms can keep up with his rise. In fact when you look at the track list of album you can see that either thanks to his YFN Lucci connect or his rapid ascent that he’s pulling featured like OMB Peezy on “Make a Way” and Boosie Badazz on “Xan’t Let It Ride.” That does bring up an interesting point though. One of the charges against Lucci in the RICO indictment was that he was gang affiliated with a chapter of the Bloods. If Bop Menaxe is that closely tied to his peer it explains why he crosses out/replaces the C every chance he gets. Lucci has never crossed them out in his own name though, nor are they replaced in the title of their duet “How to Cry,” so it may just be for style.
There are more things I like than dislike about Bop Menaxe. He turned in a 15 track album for his debut where at least four of the cuts (including “How to Cry”) are over three minutes long. These are small victories in 2021 but after the year we’ve all been through I take them where I can get them. I think what makes Bop Menaxe interesting though is that he’s more than just a braggart who constantly flashes his wealth and b*tches. He comes across as scarred by the things he’s seen in his young life, but not so deeply traumatized he can’t talk about them in song without getting totally fucked up on codeine first, so there really is a “Different Design” to this music. I can’t tell you if this is the beginning of a long and fruitful career or a peak that’s going to plateau and descend without Lucci around to help advance his career, but I’ll remain optimistic and say it’s a good start.