- Give Me Scabies (Prod. by GRANT)
- Ay Shawty: THE SHREKONING (Feat. Dankte, Prod. by SELA)
- smiledog.jpg (Prod. by Beautiful Lou)
- Orion's Belt (Feat. Riff Raff, Prod. by Beautiful Lou)
- Okay Cupid (Prod. by Beautiful Lou)
If you are reading this, it is nearly indubitable that you are aware of Kitty Pryde’s single “Okay Cupid.” The song, which finds the redheaded teenage rapper cooing lines about being obsessively in love with some teenage pillhead who’s probably pulling a C in trig underneath a Beautiful Lou beat so lush you could take a nap on it, nearly tore a black hole in the internet when its music video was released last month. In it, Pryde doesn’t really do more than walk around, sift through junk, and stand around while her friends drink (reportedly, she’s not 21), but it’s absolutely captivating in its haze, a wonderful shortform generator of nostalgia—probably even more wonderful if you’re still a teenager. Watching the video, however, brought up more questions than it answered: Who is Kitty Pryde? Why is this white girl rapping? Is the act of “rapping” in and of itself still exclusively something that can only be “hip-hop,” or is it just a form of verbal expression in pop music?
Haha, I'm Sorry doesn’t really answer any of these questions. Instead, it plumbs them further, mucking around in such notions as privilege, insiderdom, and masculinity with the innocence only afforded to a teenager. Complicating things still is—it turns out—that Kitty Pryde’s actually pretty great at rapping. Listen to “Give Me Scabies,” which is based around a sample of Carly Rae Jepsen’s “Call Me Maybe” because of course it does. She starts her verse with a pause, then just fucking goes for it, jamming a small book’s worth of syllables into her double-timed verse, mimicking the dizzying intoxication of teenage love that she’s rapping about. It’s like watching your kid ride their bike without training wheels for the first time only to discover that they’re basically the next Lance Armstrong.
Elsewhere in the tape, she holds her own against fellow internet-curio-turned-legit-rapper Riff Raff, and raps about (what I think is) an internet relationship situation with some dude named Dankte. Even though these songs are about boys and Adderall and being an unconfident teenager, they feel punk in their own way: “You say this white girl is ruining hip-hop, I say ‘Damn right’ and take a look at the Ring Pop,” she raps on “smiledog.jpg,” showcasing a damn impressive sense of self-awareness in someone her age. Elsewhere, that self-awareness turns to self-consciousness, as when she threatens to quit rapping because of people talking shit on Twitter on “Orion’s Belt.” But that’s fine. If people talked shit about my rapping on Twitter, I would definitely quit, so I applaud her for keeping on (also, the people who are talking shit are wrong).
The beats on this EP are unilaterally awesome, glomming the rolling bass and tittering snares of Southern trap-rap onto ethereal, Clams Casino-y samples. These are the exact types of beats that Kitty Pryde should be working with: they sound modern without chasing trends, evocative without being too dramatic, young without sounding childlike. They offer the nostalgic emotion of a John Hughes movie, the aforementioned “Call Me Maybe” flip teasing non-stupidity out of the original, the “I just met you/this is crazy/but here’s my number/call me maybe” chorus taking on a weird emotional weight. These are the exact types of beats that Pryde needs, ones that don’t overpower her still-developing voice, but filled with enough hooky gravitas for her to stake her claim over a specific sound. Basically, Haha, I'm Sorry rules, and if you don’t like it you’re probably old or stupid.
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