The rap game is a lot of things. Depending on who you ask, it can be easy, stressful, or even somewhat reminiscent of the crack game. Perhaps above all else, the rap game is ripe for parody. Enter Das Racist, a Brooklyn-based trio who invaded the public consciousness in 2009 via a Trojan Horse otherwise known as "Combination Pizza Hut and Taco Bell." Two 2010 mixtapes later and critics aren't labeling them joke rap anymore. They still have jokes for days, but lyrical dexterity has taken precedence on their debut LP. There's no direct shots fired here — unless you count the Rick Ross-aping "I'm selling Oxycontin on my Palm Pixi" line. But in an era where radio rappers are trapped in a perpetual shouting match, it's almost refreshing to hear something so tongue-in-cheek and half-baked. Pop culture references abound, their rhymes seemingly drift in and out of consciousness. At times, the free-association gets to be a bit much, but it's all held afloat by trampoline beats from a stud cast that includes the likes of Diplo and El-P, all channeling Magoo-era Timbaland, Kelis-era Neptunes, and Hov-era Panjabi MC.
DAS RACIST + DANNY BROWN + DESPOT | Middle East Downstairs, 472 Mass Ave, Cambridge | September 28 @ 8 pm | 18+ | $17 | 617.864.3278