BigXthaPlug's journey in rap music is far from unusual. Originally, he expected a career in football, until his university - who didn't appreciate to find him smoking marijuana - decided to expel him. What followed was a time of pain and crime, that eventually led him to prison. By then, though, upset with being incarcerated at the time of his son's birthday, he took things more seriously with rap music. After a few noteworthy songs, he started mixing with the likes of Bun B, Erykah Badu, Shaquille O'Neal, and he joined the label of rap business mogul Steve Stoute, UnitedMasters.


This story is far from unique. Actually, the only thing noticeable with BigX – "big", because of his size; "X", because it is the initial of his name; "tha plug", because he purveys good music – is that he comes from Texas. His main single is named exactly that, "Texas", and it displays all clichés related to the Lone Star State. The video shows it, with its banjos, horses, cowboy hats, and also a bit of purple drank. Also, several of the local idols are mentioned there, such as Pimp C, Trae, Z-Ro, Devin the Dude, Beyoncé, and Sauce Walka, who contributes to another BigX song, "I Know".

"Don't mess with Texas", says BigXthaPlug, as Lil' Keke before him. He is not from the usual city, though. He is based in the other one, Dallas. But on "Texas" and other songs, he connects it to the hip-hop stronghold of Houston, by adding to its glorious names some others coming from his own metropolis, sportsmen, or musicians like Erkyah Badu.

His first album is titled Amar. It is also the second name of his son, the one who prompted the big change in his life.

Immediatly, as soon as with the swaggering guitar of "Switched Up", this release shows up as a huge ego-trip. It is a long celebration of BigXthaPlug's supposed success, with threats and gun stories, of course. He is from Texas, after all.

It goes through the usual ways, the Texan ones, and the others. It is allegedly biographic, and it glorifies the rapper's origins. Nevertheless, it is impersonal. With old routines such as "Bacc To Tha Basics" and "Safehouse", the quieter tracks in the middle, with the strip club anthem "Thick", supported by female rappers Tay Money and Erica Banks, and with the ladies song "Bad Bitches", where BigXthaPlug confides about his affection for Latto and Megan Thee Stallion, Amar sounds exactly like the release from a major label.

But a solid one. One delivered by a rapper who really raps, without any pause or silence, with a thirst for revenge in each word, a strong production work, and a few gems such as "Primetime" with its saxophone, "Levels" with voices sampled from soul band 21st Century, and eventually the introspective "Dream", where he reminisces about his painful life. BigXthaPlug, at the end of the day, checks many boxes.

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