This is Cleaning Out My Saved Drafts Week.
“I’m On” is probably my favorite posse cut of the year, with all due respect to future COMSDW subject “2 Deep,” and it’s the exact same sort of shit-talk that the best posse cuts of the modern era are about: Being fly and wearing fresh attire and smoking expensive high-grade marijuana.
But this isn’t every other posse cut: it’s got a weird mix of contributors — with the exception of Wale and Wiz, it would be weird to see any two of the four rapping guests together on a track — and works despite putting its heaviest hitters at the beginning and saving the airiest for last. It’s also a wonderfully produced track, from Houston’s CyFyre with a few rippling synth notes, sharp drums, and the repeated chop of MDMA’s “I’m on” leaving it suspended in thin air in a way that the other big “I’m on” song of 2011 isn’t.
And, best of all, everyone gets off: Lupe sounds at ease and doesn’t have to shoehorn in his attempt to be thoughtful; Trae’s whispery menace contrasts with everyone else beautifully; Antwan is barely trying, but comes up with the best image of the whole endeavor (“Made my mark like the craters on the moon / Rockin’ alligator shoes”); Wale’s fortune cookie-ism (“Rather live alone forever than live a lie”) hits; and whoa, Wiz raps like he really wants to be part of an upper echelon, almost double-timing and then switching back to “Nigga, I’m on like the light,” one hell of a truism, before a dismount that’s so clever I can’t believe he came up with it.