Despite the general misconception in today’s discussion about Hip-Hop, the female rap subculture is vast, varied, and full of Baddies.
Kari Faux is a rapper, singer, songwriter, and record producer who has been sharing her music with the world since 2014. Her debut mixtape got attention as one of the “Most Overlooked Mixtapes of 2014,” and even led to some collaborations with Childish Gambino. Her most recent releases include the Cry 4 Help EP in 2019 and her Lowkey Superstar mixtape in 2020.
Me First Review
The Me First EP, independently released by Kari Faux on January 24, 2023, provides listeners with two very different versions of the same song, similar to vinyl disco EPs of the 1970s. And, true to the implied 1970s theme, the EP’s artwork is a beautifully hand-drawn cover depicting a cosmic vision of people gathered around a rollerskating stripper on a different planet.
Track One, or the “A-side” of the EP, is the original version of the track, which is slow, rhythmic, and bass-heavy. It takes its time, lavishing on the message of the song.
Track Two is a remix by UNIQU3 and it is like a celebratory speed run through the track, with verses almost double the pace of the original version overtop of a club beat so ferocious that I can see the strobe lights when I close my eyes.
This approach to the EP helps to show Faux’s versatility because she created a song that could be playing in a lounge, while also playing at the club; and the untrained ear would never know that the two were one and the same. Faux even switches up her cadene for the second track so that the words fit the new, fast pace.
Faux sets the tone of both versions of the song with the chorus of:
“It’s me first nigga, ‘cause you know I put in work
And you know I know my worth
It’s me first nigga, I ain’t fucking for no purse
Gimme head and then you skirt“
Then, with the first verse, Faux flexes her status by name-dropping an American designer clothing brand and then going into her personal magnetism.
“You like the way it’s fitting in my Eckhaus Latta
Wanna put a baby in it ‘cause I’m shaped like a bottle
Always do the most, rev it up full throttle.“
The song is about how Faux deserves to get her rocks off first and foremost rather than being a slave to her man’s needs because she is the breadwinner in the house and knows that she should be treated like a goddess and a queen.
She boasts of the fish she’s caught in the second verse with the catchy:
“Nigga, me me me
Had an all star from the league league on his knees
He know I come first I’m in the lead lead lead
Believe me sweetie, I’ll have you begging, “Baby, feed me.”
Do it right and he stop by bi-weekly
A bitch got bills so you goin see me when you see me.“
The way that Faux plays with the beat in Track 1 is reminiscent of someone doling out a delightful cunnilingus session and savoring the experience, while the way she handles Track 2 is more in line with a frantic quickie in which she gets what she’s after. Both tracks are incredibly powerful and are sure to find their way onto many a “Feeling Myself” and “Girl Boss” Spotify playlist this year.
Outside of the blatantly raunchy message of the song, it is also an incredible power track, lending to feelings of power and big energy. This is a song that can make any woman feel sexy at the drop of a record needle.
Kari Faux is an underground Queen who deserves her place next to mainstream rap royalty, and it is apparent in both tracks on the Me First EP as she shows off, not only her pen game and the ability for clever wordplay, but her versatility and capacity to switch up her rhythm, flow, and speed, and I cannot wait to see what else she has in store for us.