For years, the Richmond artist Lil Ugly Mane made murky, lo-fi rap music that was generally impossible to categorize. Then, he mostly stopped. Now, he might be starting again. Earlier this summer, Lil Ugly Mane came out with two new songs, “Headboard” and “Here I Am,” that served as his first new music in a couple of years. (One of the songs had quietly existed on YouTube for a couple of months, but it wouldn’t be a Lil Ugly Mane release if it didn’t come out in a vague and shambolic fashion.) Today, Lil Ugly Mane has released another two tracks, neither of which really qualifies as rap music.
Lil Ugly Mane’s new tracks “Porcelain Slightly” and “Into A Life,” are both built on dusty breakbeats. But Ugly Mane doesn’t really rap on either song, and both tracks make me think of slack, murky ’90s alt-rock. “Porcelain Slightly” is all about endless soul-crushing arguments — “I wait for panic to subside and scrape the tarnish from my mind / Rotted home.” It sounds like the most depressed song that the Rentals ever released. “Into A Life” is all depressed, hard-partying regret, and it has at least one immortal line: “You made me impatient like a V.32 modem, but I knew I was happy that you called.” It sounds a bit like Folk Implosion, or like that one Primitive Radio Gods song if it had come out on K Records. Listen to both tracks below.
If you’d rather hear Lil Ugly Mane making something like rap music, he just appeared on “Flowers,” a short track from producer Tony Seltzer’s new album Hey Tony. Here’s that song:
“Porcelain Slightly” b/w “Into A Life” is out now at Bandcamp. Tony Seltzer’s Hey Tony is out now on NSP.