Ranking Every Chris Crack Song Released in 2020
When an artist releases five albums in a year, it’s often followed by questions about consistency. The common understanding being that in order to achieve quantity, one must sacrifice quality, and vice versa. The exception is West Side Chicago’s Chris Crack.
In 2018, Crack made a conscious effort to rap full-time and then some, releasing five albums, which included conspicuous song titles like “Masturbate Before Making Decisions,” “We’re Not Monogamous At All,” and “Registered Flex Offender,” which attracted loads of curious rap fans before they could even hear him utter a word. With an exploratory click, one is often met with a lush, sample-rich instrumental, adorned with rhythms that sound like they’ve been plucked from 90’s R&B songs, which create a flowery infrastructure for his energetic raps that bounce from poignant to playful just like his song titles.
In an early 2019 interview with Pitchfork, Crack said, “I don’t go out in Chicago. I don’t talk to anybody. I don’t fuck with nobody. You would swear I’m sleeping in the studio.” So when 2020 kicked down our collective door with a Kool-Aid Man-sized pitcher of coronavirus juice, not much changed for Crack as far as his artistic productivity goes. Like years past, he released another five albums, 70 songs, and maintained a level of focus and unique artistry reminiscent only of Lil Wayne’s ’06-’08 mixtape run, or maybe the year Vincent Van Gogh spent sky-watching and ear-chopping in Arles, France.
So in order to celebrate his upcoming album, MIGHT DELETE LATER, to be released with Fool’s Gold Records on February 12th, I spent some time with every song he released last year and parsed together a list inspired by Alphonse Pierre’s similar ranking of Rx Papi songs.
Disclaimer: Sorting art on a public outlet is an open-call for conflict so let me say that this list only reflects my opinion and is ultimately arbitrary, but making lists is fun, so here is my ranking of every song Chris Crack released in 2020.
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70. “Hand Fulla Fupa” – Good Cops Don’t Exist
Many of his downtempo croons are at the bottom of this list. They’re not even really bad songs, and Crack is a weirdly capable singer in his own way, but any time he doesn’t rap on one of his songs, it feels like a missed opportunity.
69. “Keep it Delicious” – Good Cops Don’t Exist
68. “Oontz Oontz” – Haters Forget They Were Fans First
67. “Baby Hair Check” – White People Love Algorithms
66. “Face Sitting and Frank Ocean“- Washed Rappers Ain’t Legends
This 52-second interlude, according to Spotify, is one of his biggest songs just based on the strength of Frank Ocean’s likeness.
65. “Marshall Law” – White People Love Algorithms
64. “Hardest Thing to Be Is Black” – Good Cops Don’t Exist
63. “Mase in the Range Rover” – Washed Rappers Ain’t Legends
62. “Just Alone Not Lonely” – Washed Rappers Ain’t Legends
61. “Emotions Become Obstacles” – Cute Boys (The Rise of Lil Delicious)
60. “Post Nut Clarity” – Cute Boys (The Rise of Lil Delicious)
59. “Losing Was Confusing” – Haters Forget They Were Fans First
58. “Troof Too Loud” – Cute Boys (The Rise of Lil Delicious)
57. “Past Tents” – Cute Boys (The Rise of Lil Delicious)
56. “Ointment Appointment” – Washed Rappers Ain’t Legends
People make the Danny Brown comparison a lot when talking about Chris Crack and the verse in this song really shows why. Part of it probably has to do with the Bruiser Brigade reference, but it’s especially clear in his inflection at the end of each bar.
This is a chopped and screwed Drake song with some ambient chatter over top, which is good
53. “Shit Aint Suite” – Cute Boys (The Rise of Lil Delicious)
52. “Go Where You’re Prioritized” – Good Cops Don’t Exist
51. “Social Media is Not the Internet” – Washed Rappers Ain’t Legends
50. “Nobody Wants Somebody That Nobody Wants” – Haters Forget They Were Fans First
49. “Life Happens When You’re Making Plans” – Washed Rappers Ain’t Legends
48. “More Art Less Thought” – White People Love Algorithms
This beat is a bit on the slower side but “safety always off, I’m still flippin’ and toting something like Lara Croft,” is one of his best opening lines.
This Boi Jeanius beat is special.
He doesn’t really rap on this song but the beat and repetitive phrases are mesmerizing.
His slim stature did not stop him from claiming that he’s “built like Jerome Bettis.”
39. “Dogs Don’t Bark at Parked Cars” – Good Cops Don’t Exist
There’s a Nashvillean twang in his voice when he sings “I can’t get rid of herrrrrr.” Also, he says he’s using avocado pits in his smoothies which is something I will be researching further.
Lela Bizz rocks the first half of this track, and Crack brings it too, as expected.
33. “Hypebeasts Ruined Bape” – White People Love Algorithms
32. “Same Story Just Different Names” – Washed Rappers Ain’t Legends
31. “Lonely N**** Clinic” – Good Cops Don’t Exist
30. “Jail Pose With Gangstas” – Good Cops Don’t Exist
This is the longest song he released last year but it does not overstay its welcome. Rome Streetz gives a great feature.
29. “Raman Noodles on Memorial Day” – Cute Boys (The Rise of Lil Delicious)
“Crack is just a gateway drug to Capri Sun” will be interpreted and reinterpreted for generations to come.
28. “Rappers Never Actually Sell Drugs” – Haters Forget They Were Fans First
27. “Cougar Perfume” – Cute Boys (The Rise of Lil Delicious)
26. “Productively Stoned” – White People Love Algorithms
25. “Sex Workers Over Cops” – Cute Boys (The Rise of Lil Delicious)
24. “Lust Expires” – Cute Boys (The Rise of Lil Delicious)
This beat?? Everything from here to number one is in contention for best production of the year.
23. “Fap With the Good Lotion” – Haters Forget They Were Fans First
If you put this song on and leave the room, you’ll come back to a dim oasis with candles lit, smoky air, and a lavender-coconut scent. Blink once and a chocolate fondue machine appears on the end table. Blink again and the fire safety sprinkler system spits out rose petals that descend from the ceiling like feathers.
Also, the Will Schube shoutout is huge for music journalism.
22. “Chipped My Tooth Eating Pussy” – White People Love Algorithms
Ugly Boy Modeling’s sung verse is wildly ambitious but ultimately a highlight of the excellent White People Love Algorithms.
21. “Ice Cream Machine Wasn’t Broke in the 90’s” – Haters Forget They Were Fans First
20. “Kramer on Murphy Brown” – Haters Forget They Were Fans First
19. “You Don’t Know Timmy Thick” – Washed Rappers Ain’t Legends
The way the bass line dances on this thing makes it hard to catch anything Chris Crack says. Add that to the list of reasons to listen to it again.
The second and second-to-last tracks on Cute Boys (The Rise of Lil Delicious) share an instrumental that acts as a perfect place for a “word toss” as Crack calls it.
16. “Hoes at Trader Joe’s” – White People Love Algorithms
This was Chris Crack’s biggest song of the year due to its dancey instrumental and Lela Bizz-assisted hook. Like many of his songs, he’s able to showcase his versatility- the execution on this one leads to something that’s particularly creative and also easily accessible.
15. “Reparations Not Decorations” – Good Cops Don’t Exist
This beat samples the same Shiloh Dynasty snippet as XXXTentacion’s “Jocelyn Flores,” of which half is given to James Baldwin, and the other half a Chris Crack verse full of reflections on days past and current tragedies.
Really just a flawless verse followed by an anthemic hook.
12. “Free Wifi” – Washed Rappers Ain’t Legends
“Now they wanna know about the trips down to Texas”
The slurred vocal sample and pitched down hats feel Houston-inspired, or Clams Casino-inspired at the very least. Either way, it’s a little unordinary for him.
11. “Gunpowder on my Watchband” – Cute Boys (The Rise of Lil Delicious)
Only 45 seconds long but man, this Dixie Nightingales vocal sample goes perfectly with his spirited verse. I could run this back for hours.
And my pick for best sung Chris Crack hook goes to this one. Everything about this song is effortlessly old school.
8. “Don’t Be a Vic” – White People Love Algorithms
Great sample. Great chop.
7. “We Just Wanted to Dream” – White People Love Algorithms
“They killing everybody but George Zimmerman, I ain’t feeling it.”
6. “White Lies Cost Black Lives” – Cute Boys (The Rise of Lil Delicious)
This sample is a surefire way to a hot song, and this one is no exception. The hook itself calls out cultural appropriation and killer cops, and leads into a great couple of Crack verses, and one from Denmark Vessey as well.
5. “We Too Busy Working Hard” – Cute Boys (The Rise of Lil Delicious)
This Nolan the Ninja beat features the hardest kick in any Chris Crack song from 2020, which isn’t saying much, because a lot of his instrumentals don’t feature any traditional hip-hop drums at all, but after hearing this, you can’t help but wonder what kind of damage he’d do to some more conventional rap beats.
“Older I get, I understand Britney’s meltdown.”
4. “Whodathunkit” – White People Love Algorithms
“My big brother just got out of surgery. Four gunshot wounds, five total, I was nine years old, and I had my mind open. Nurse covered my eyes ‘cause she had a kind notion. Flash forward, all I wanna do is shine on ‘em.”
3. “I Know a Place” – Good Cops Don’t Exist
When this song starts, you are smacked in the face by the Makoto Matsushita sample, which contorts itself in a couple different ways before welcoming Chris Crack, who goes on a 2 and a half minute tirade that ends with: “every storm run out of rain, ain’t shit changed, I’m in a range, and my music is love or pain, I still do this shit for the game, bang”
2. “Winners Just Losers That Didn’t Quit” – Haters Forget They Were Fans First
This beat, brought to us by prodbykhari, consists of some of the best sounds Crack has ever rapped over and he brings an energy and sense of urgency that you can’t turn away from.
“I sacrificed my whole mind in this, that’s why I’m crying in it”
1. “Sheesh Lets Go Joe” – Haters Forget They Were Fans First
My favorite Chris Crack song is the last track on Haters Forget They Were Fans First with it’s chipmunk-y vocals, flanged to hell chops, and incredible Crack verse. He ping pongs between peacocking and personal admissions, making for another unpredictable appearance, and solidifying himself as one of the most exciting rappers working right now.
Support Chris Crack on Bandcamp.