No Dealings- [Lil Keed]

Lil Keed has been on an absolute roll when it comes to dropping music. He has amassed a notable following through his various mixtapes and projects, and he doesn’t seem to be slowing down any time soon. Sometimes being referred to as “Young Thug’s son”, the resemblance and influence are noteworthy of course, but his out of the box style is subtly different from the legendary Atlanta mainstay.

Keed is back and better than ever with his most recent single “No Dealings” which is a peek at what he has in store for fans on his upcoming mixtape Trapped on Cleveland 3, the follow up to its 2018 predecessor. The production is set with expressive guitar strums, rattling hats, and absolutely booming 808s. Keed shows of his shrill delivery as he underemphasizes his words, simulating the idea that his talents come so natural to him that he doesn’t even have to try. Although his voice sounds like an instrument in and of itself, his always lively background ad-libs bring the energy levels on this track to new heights. He might not be rapping as intricately or fast-paced as he is known to spit, but his melodic delivery shares emotions and thoughtfulness as he continues on throughout the song. Keed has been known to talk about luxurious goods like most of the other artists in the industry, but he distances himself from them by namedropping specific brands, talking about them in always fascinating, detailed ways. This is apparent on this record as he talks about Louis Vuitton duffle bags holding massive amounts of money, Chanel pants, and riding around in Bentleys, as well as shouting out some of the people that mean a lot to him including his mom, his brother who is the rising star known as Lil Gotit, and his dearly deceased friend Mexico.

The accompanying visual for this song begins in a dark room as the camera zooms in on an old-school, boxy television. The TV shows actual footage of Keed coming out to a rowdy crowd at one of his shows, clearly demonstrating just how wild his concerts can get. To transition among different shots and scenes, the camera continuously pans in and out from the TV screen, bringing us to different worlds and moments in time. One of the settings takes place on a candle-lit staircase as the rapper ascends, lighting more candles and spitting his lyrics. He can also be observed standing in front of a painting and based on his actions and emotions that are clearly running through his mind, I believe it’s a portrait of his departed friend Mexico. As the video moves on, Keed shows off his always impressive drip, including diamond chains, rings, and designer clothing.

Lil Keed continues to impress me with every new piece of music he puts out. When I first heard him, I was an instant fan but worried that his style would sound repetitive and get monotonous, but I’m so happy he has proved me wrong since I initially had this thought. His persona is that of a star and he fits right in with the massive names he has worked with in the past, not allowing himself and his personality to get overshadowed by the other massive artists he is surrounded by. While I think it’s clear that Thugger took him under his wing and helped boost him into the spotlight, this wouldn’t be possible without the already incredible foundation he laid for himself. I have no idea as to when TOC3 is supposed to drop, but hopefully now that some new singles are releasing, it’s not too far away from seeing the light of day. “No Dealings” should be more than enough to hold us over for at least a little bit, so peep the new song and visual as soon as you get the chance.