The first minute of EST Gee’s “Funk Flex Freestyle” is incredibly awkward. It’s not entirely clear if EST Gee is familiar with Funk Flex or vice versa, and they have this strange small talk where Flex gauges if he’s too optimistic about Covid-19 vaccinations, though EST Gee just doesn’t respond and (I assume) is transfixed by his own reflection in Funk Flex’s bald head. But that uneasiness disappears once the beat drops and the Louisville rapper locks into his comfort zone: “They know they can’t play us, niggas died they bring my name up/And please don’t call my phone ’bout coppin’ deuces I’m gon’ hang up/And I’ll still get active with no mask forget I’m famous,” he raps on the opening lines. His blend of vivid storytelling and street politics reminds me of the late Bankroll Fresh. The freestyle is not long enough, but there’s not a line wasted. Unfortunately, Gee didn’t get any of the signature Flex facial reactions, further proving my theory that they have no idea who each other are.

With artists releasing songs at a fast and furious pace, it’s difficult for the average hip-hop head to keep track of it all—no matter how tapped in they are. That’s why we created The Ones, a daily post to highlight the song you need to hear.

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