All throughout Vince Staples‘ near decade long career, he has shouted out the neighborhood he grew up in: Ramona Park in Long Beach, CA.
Whether it be on feature verses like ScHoolboy Q‘s Blank Face track “Ride Out,” or solo material like “Birds & Bees” or “Hell Bound (Ad 01),” Vince has always offered bars about the community he keeps close to his heart.
However, Vince has decided to dive a bit deeper into his upbringing in that neighborhood, and how it shaped his attitudes about life. On April 8, Staples released his brand new studio album RAMONA PARK BROKE MY HEART, lasting 41 minutes over 16 songs.
The album is his first since last summer’s exquisite self-titled record VINCE STAPLES, which lasts almost 20 minutes shorter than RPBMH. With features from Lil Baby and Ty Dolla $ign as well as production from hitmakers like Mustard, Kenny Beats and others, the project feels much grander and more expansive in every aspect.
With consistency and continuously growing versatility, Vince Staples once again has proven that he belongs in the upper echelon of hip-hop’s top-tier lyricists.
Check out ‘RAMONA PARK BROKE MY HEART’ below!
Vince Staples reveals ‘Ramona Park Broke My Heart’ track list, drops ‘Rose Street’ single
After already putting out a promotional single with Mustard titled “Magic” on Valentine’s Day, Staples took the next step in his rollout on Sunday night after the Oscar’s (March 27), dropping the album’s second single “ROSE STREET,” thanks to inspiration from Will Smith “slapping the sh*t” out of Chris Rock. One week after “ROSE STREET’s” release, Vince shared the track list to his upcoming LP, complete with 16 new cuts and no features on his second full-length offering in one calendar year.
“ROSE STREET” builds upon the glossy production with soothing melodies on Vince Staples, as Vince adds a hint of toxicity to his trademark streets raps that he injected into last year’s album and every project prior.
Came up outta every case with my crippin’ intact
She be lying to my face so I hit from the back
Let a real nigga know if you a house wife or a ho
Picked the blacker berry, I ain’t dealing with the snow
We ain’t gettin’ married, girl, I’m gettin’ to the dough“ROSE STREET” — Vince Staples
Staples’ doubles down on these motifs in the hook about dramatic women, and while it appears to be in jest, he proves that there’s truth hiding behind every joke.
She said she in love, what’s that?
Trust, what’s that?
Us, what’s that? Yeah
I’m married to the gang, don’t be playing games
Only bringing flowers to the homie’s grave“ROSE STREET” — Vince Staples
The duality of Staples’ approach on love with “ROSE STREET” and “Magic” likely alludes to an evolution in his thought process throughout the album. As he unveiled the April 8 release date for his project RAMONA PARK BROKE MY HEART via pre-save link, which came simultaneously with the single’s release, we see that “Magic” comes way before “ROSE STREET” in the 16-song track list.
While Vince Staples proved how technically sound and confident Vince was in his artistry, it seems that RAMONA PARK BROKE MY HEART will follow a much more intensive theme and structure. When speaking on the album in a post before “ROSE STREET,” Vince explained how he now refuses to confine the meaning of “home” to solely a location, but rather a feeling, and that that growth helped fuel this project.
It seems we have quite the story coming our way from Vince Staples, as the California native’s new project is poised to push the envelope on previous signature sounds.
Check out “ROSE STREET” by Vince Staples below!