I stopped paying much attention to M-Dot about two years ago. His multisyllabic monuments have filled my headphones countless times since, but the novelty of a new joint from his EMS crew simply wore off. I wasn't born on Tumblr; one of my favorite things about music has always been the waiting and anxiety — kind of like the reason that I don't jerk off 10 times a day. So when M-Dot started servicing five songs a week — not to mention videos and freestyles — I lost interest, which is not to say that I knock his hustle. Chewing on Layercake, his latest buffet of jaw-droppers, I made some sense of this approach. Unlike most cats whose agile darts provoke head-nods if not seizures, M-Dot marries the best and boldest aspects of the Golden Era to the prolific hustle of a blog rapper. Whatever it is, it's working, from "You Ain't Ready," a bouncy MidiFlash production fit for jalopy joyrides, to Rocky anthems like "Circulate." As usual, the Lynn MC excels alongside exalted co-pilots, and he spares no breaths hanging with the likes of Terror Squad rep Armageddon ("Worldwide"), Camp Lo and Tribeca ("True Lies"), and the Olympic-size competition of Chaundon, Daily Planet, and Cymarshall Law ("El Mariachi"). At its best, Layercake finds M-Dot weaving a go-for-the-gold battle-rap narrative over bangers from hungry young producers, and even addressing topics other than himself on tracks like "The Doors." At its worst, a few gimmicky flops like "123 Flow" interfere, though not enough to subtract from medalists like "Let It Out." I'm sure that M-Dot has another 15 albums on the way, but with 26 tracks to digest, Layercake should keep us full for at least another year.
M-DOT | The Sand Bar, 714 Washington St, Lynn | September 2 @ 9pm | 21+ | $5 | 617.593.7263