Review: ‘Shameless $uicide’ EP

By Luis Olguin, March 14, 2023

Have you ever been curious about what type of music your ex-partner with multiple red flags listens to? Or the music an edgy 16-year-old listens to when they are angry at their parents?

$uicideboy$, also known as $B, are a New Orleans-based duo named consisting of Aristos Petrou, known as $crim, and Scott Arcenaux Jr., who goes by Ruby Da Cherry, two cousins who grew up in New Orleans’ 7th Ward. The duo’s birth narrative, which goes back to 2014, involves a long-mythologized suicide pact: If the music didn’t work out, there would be nothing left to live for. They were recognized early on for their shock-rap style and lyrics that were filled with despair. Fortunately, everything turned out just fine.

The duo is renowned for its depressing lyrics — the result of $crim’s drug use and Ruby’s despair — and ominous instrumentals, which extensively borrow from groups from the 1990s Memphis scene, including Three 6 Mafia, early Cash Money, trap music and even hardcore punk.

Honestly, to describe or pin their type of genre of music is quite difficult as there is a mix of everything. Of course, it’s rap but there is a quite heavy influence of metal, punk and alternative rock in general in their songs. Just note that their music is aggressive and speaks of drugs, money and a suicidal lifestyle. They are quite similar to artists like XXXTentacion, Ghostmane or Playboi Carti.

With 36 EPs, six mixtapes, an expected album and collaborations with artists like Music/Getter, Denzel Curry, JGRXXN and Juicy J, they have accumulated a remarkably sizable history and a sizable audience despite only being around for a few years.

This collaborative EP is with Shakewell, a recording artist from Los Angeles that $B signed to their very own Virgin Records imprint G*59 Record$ during the pandemic. The trio had recorded a few tracks together, including “Venom” and “Solutions,” but given that the $B have released many collaborative EPs with other G*59 signees, it seemed only fair for them to work with Shakewell on “Shameless $uicide.”

It’s always interesting to see the $B team up with another one of their artists who is signed to G*59 Record$ for a collaborative EP.

$B released a really good EP that demonstrates the group’s progress in moving away from their signature sound and toward something more melodic. The EP is excellent, and Shakewell contributes a respectable amount of presence to each song. For the 18 minutes the EP is on, powerful hitting beats over simple and sample-laden trap songs make for a good listen.

The EP is short with six tracks that are far greater in quality. Each one sounds wonderful and serves a certain function. Each song captures the aesthetic dark rap sound that $B is renowned for. The formula is constant, yet I still like listening to their projects since the structure and aesthetic are what make $B tracks what they are.

The EP’s title track opens with the duo being ear blasted to a dismal trap beat, while the second song, “Whole Lotta Grey,” adds synths and hi-hats as they talk with all of their might. The songs “Gutter Bravado,” and “Went to Rehab and All I Got Was This Lousy Shirt” keeps the futuristic sounds continuing. It is a spooky trap banger about the half man, half demigod. Before the expansive conclusion “Big Shot Cream Soda” gets to the paper, the penultimate track “6 Lines, 2 Dragons, and a Messiah” with its shimmering beat samples Gangsta Blac’s “Tire Shop” refers to the group as the founders.

Overall, the EP is a great listen and a great introduction for new fans. I would recommend listening to this EP and their overall whole discography. Honestly, some of the songs of this EP doesn’t feel too new or different from what they have released before. If the EP is listened to in order, then the tracks flow like butter which sync and blend quite nicely.  As aggressive as the beats and names of the songs are, there are a few songs with beautiful lyrics that could break a listener’s expectations.

Feature image courtesy of Jackson Gray

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