JPEGMAFIA has kept himself busy during quarantine. The Baltimore-based experimental rapper, also known as Peggy, has just released yet another track in his online series How To Build A Relationship. Nestled alongside previously-released tracks such as “BALD!” and “BODYGUARD!”, “CUTIE PIE!” is the fifth single in the series.
JPEGMAFIA’s body of work epitomizes the information chaos of the internet; Kenny Beats once described his music as what would happen “if the dark web got a hold of your beat and spat it back out.” Random noises, stream-of-consciousness rapping, glitchy beats and sonic allusions are spliced together to create such a hyper-digital patchwork of sound that he gets compared to Death Grips more frequently than to any other artist. Which is to say, Peggy’s music isn’t for everyone.
While his new track still brings some classic Peggy chaos, “CUTIE PIE!” is surprisingly palatable by mainstream standards. On “CUTIE PIE!,” Peggy raps calmly and consistently over a submerged kick/snare duo, an uncharacteristically recognizable ’90s flow clearly exposing his usually concealed artistic roots. Calling out other artists by name, the lyrics are jam-packed with quips about his industry peers: “Lemme look at your deal, 21 Savage,” he says. “Billie Eilish got four GRAMMYs, it’s frightenin’.” In the refrain, a delicate flurry of electronic chimes is interpolated under the vocals, a clever nod to both the track’s title and the prominent influence of video games on Peggy’s music.
Shot with a shaky hand-held camera, the video heightens the unbridled creative energy of the song. “Keep filming no matter what,” Peggy says at the beginning of the video before sprinting off into the desert, camerawoman in toe. This perfectly captures the way the track feels—once Peggy gets going, it’s all forward momentum. Its impeccable production and precise execution make it easy listening in the best possible way, so enjoy the ride.
Watch the video for “CUTIE PIE!” below: