It would seem that Maximilian 500 delivered an amusing twist to the dodgy glam world that usually sparkles in the genre of Neon Noir. The genre itself pinpoints us to the days of Miami Vice, the oh-so-familiar 80’s décor celebrated through visually stunning skylines (accompanied with designer fashion) hovering over crime-infested streets. But it’s a different Neon Noir we are taking about; in fact we are talking about “Neon/Noir”, the debut project of a young Miami-based emcee that likes to consider himself ’68 Gotenks.
Whether the name(s) or genres have any relevancy, the truth of the manner is that this tape unravels to listeners in a remarkable way. The Flosstradamus “Lana’s Theme” beat gets another hip-hop treatment with the “4G” track. The quirky raps of Maximilian 500 and McQueen (the lone rapping feature on the tape) are guided through a steady flow throughout. However, the standout in Neon/Noir was actually the first song recorded, “Burgandy”. You might recognize the familiarity of the beat through Lil Wayne – Nothing Can Stop Me or even Earl Sweatshirt – Blade. Maximilian 500 really showcases his clever wordplay, with lines that read out, “Friday nights were DiGorno’s and porno, now I’m with 5 dimes at the disco inferno”.
One of my favorite distinguishable aspects of this tape is the beat selection. It’s important in this manner because none of the content comes off as forced; there are no sudden jumps in the overall vibe and atmosphere. Erykah Badu’s “Window Seat” instrumental gets me every time, so maybe there is hidden bias in that. With happy-go-lucky interludes in Beach Drive to spellbinding melodies in Dusk, Maximilian 500 has me screaming “Asalaam aLakers game, court side” with this release. It can already be assumed that we’ll see this Miami youngster in the Finals when it’s all said and done.