Hello, I’m MusiCommentator, and even though 2018 was undoubtedly Marshmello’s biggest year, he hasn’t slowed down on making music coming into 2019, as he has a new EP with SOB X RBE
Marshmello is not a new face on this blog. I reviewed his single “FRIENDS” with Anne-Marie a long time ago, and it was a tasteless song that did not succeed lyrically or vocally. However, his more recent hit “Happier” was better by leaps and bounds. Bastille brought a great voice and maturity to the lyrics, and Marshmello’s bouncy production made it a great summer jam. These two songs, I believe, reflect my opinion on him because, usually, he’s a hit-or-miss artist for me (and no, I WON’T stop using that phrase just because of some stupid meme). SOB X RBE, though, are a set of artist I’m less acquainted with. SOB X RBE is a rap collective from California that proved themselves to be a group to watch for with their song on the Black Panther Soundtrack “Paramedic!”. Since then, they’ve released three whole projects. I’ve only listened to one of these, and they showed on it that they were good at their west coast style of rap. However, I would have never seen Marshmello and SOB X RBE coming together for a song, let alone an EP, so let’s see what they have to offer us.
#1: Roll The Dice
The EP starts with the title track. The subject matter is typical stuff for SOB: associating with the gang lifestyle. Yhung T.O. lays down a smooth hook with his melodic rap style. This signature flow of his makes him the best on the song and the probably the EP. Slimmy B and DaBoii give some serviceable verses, too, but I specifically like the rhyme scheme in Slimmy B’s verse. However, their flows sound very similar compared to one another, which makes you more fortunate that the track only has two verses and not three. Still, this sounds much like any SOB song, so I guess it works as the first track.
#2: Don’t Save Me
This song continues on the themes of the first with a beat very similar. Slimmy B handles the chorus this time, and while he does a decent job, I would have really loved to hear another one from Yhung T.O. T.O. actually gets his own verse in this one, where he has some good lines (“Bounce out with that mask, like I’m Marshmello”) and some bad lines (“B*tch, I’m the sh*t, like a porta potty”). This is probably the weakest track of the three, but at least they all sounded like they had fun making it–especially on Slimmy B’s verse.
#3: First Place
Again, this track is much like the previous two in that it almost exclusively focuses on gang affiliation. Yhung T.O. gives a smooth hook again, but there are parts of his verse where his flow sounds a bit awkward. Slimmy B and DaBoii, again, have very similar verses. This song is like the first two in a lot of respects, so talking about it is hard. I guess it’s just best to say whatever I said about the other two tracks applies here, too.
While every artist involved on here gives serviceable performances, none of them do anything to wow me or make me want to come back to this project in the future. On a technical level, the members of SOB X RBE don’t do anything wrong, but they usually have the same sets of flows they choose from, which makes some of this project feel dull, even if it’s only three songs. Their topics also stay the same, with many of the lyrics feeling like they have no connection to one another and not much to spice up their content. Fortunately for this EP, it’s only three songs, meaning you don’t get worn out from the style too quickly, but SOB don’t show much in the way of variety. The most disappointing part of this project is probably Marshmello. Much like SOB, he doesn’t do anything on the surface that is inherently wrong, but all of the instrumentals on here sound like beats I could pick from any one of SOB’s solo projects. Marshmello is an EDM super-producer, but what’s the point of having him on here if he’s just going to make stuff that any one of SOB’s producers could? So, this EP gives us a collection of decent west coast bangers with fun performances, but its lack of variety and originality is what really brings it down.
Overall, I’d give Marshmello & SOB X RBE’s “Roll The Dice” EP a 5 out of 10. Do you agree?
Thank you for reading my “Roll The Dice” EP review. If you liked this review, make sure to follow my website, Twitter, and Instagram, like this post, and be sure to check in to read my future reviews. Also, if you have something you want to see me review, tell me in the comments. Until then, keep on listening to good music! I know I will.