Thursday, May 30 2024

Born in Newark New Jersey, via Atlanta before settling in Hollywood, GS Flipp arrives with his debut single, ‘Long Ride’. It’s a short, compact and melodic insight into what to expect on future release. GS sees himself as the voice of the traumatised, the down-trodden, the deluded lovers et a la; admirable sentiments indeed, but it’s far too early to tell whether there’s any substance to this.  

Inspired by artists such as Central Cee, Young Thug and Lil Durk, GS Flipp, his lyrical palette consists of life’s traumas, mishaps and family and relationship issues. It all sounds very familiar in what’s becoming a saturated market. So, does GS have the necessary individuality of sound and flow to rise above the rest and gain success? 

There are promising aspects to his first offering; it’s generally a, musically, well produced and balanced piece, but far too short and stunted in its narrative and structural development, and, contains the same mix of trap beats, sub bass, vocoder effects, single beat drop-outs, I’ve heard on my 15-year-old’s Spotify playlists countless times. 

What GS does possess is a very good ear for melody, but often saturates them in effects, or replicates harmonic variants of the same melody in often dissonant intervals. Whether this is a confidence issue of his own voice, I’m unsure, but the listener is often left straining to hear the narrative within the muddy vocal production. Early days, but hopefully this will improve because there is talent here and it needs to be nurtured.

GS Flipp Meadia Pic

The song itself is highlighted by good use of a nice picked acoustic guitar sample, which features throughout; before an almost unintelligible overly vocoded vocal comes in. At this point, I’m done. I’ve heard it before. Many times. And it offers nothing. It’s white noise and has become a cliché I’m afraid. Out of nowhere GS brings in the main melody, which for all intents and purposes should be the chorus hook and reprised between stanzas. Frustratingly, it isn’t.  

This is a very linear piece. The first notable verse section is delivered staccato and sparsely garnished with bass drum, picked guitar and all subsequent verses build intensity gradually. It’s a good idea, but without the use of chorus or bridge to break up and add cadence, it misses the opportunities presented to deliver something that will truly resonate with the listener and last.

The problem I have with modern hip-hop is not the story telling. It never was. GS does have a good grasp of this and his narrative progression is good. It’s that I’m convinced there have only been about a dozen classic hip-hop albums since ‘Ready to Die.’ That was 1994! You can add Drake, A$ap Rocky and Kendrick Lemar and perhaps Tyler, The Creator as artists that have created good to very good albums in the last 10 years or so, but that just tells me that the musical blueprint being used needs re-addressing. Like I said, It’s not the storytelling that’s the issue.

This is the conundrum facing GS Flipp; innovate or replicate? There’s enough within, ‘Long Ride’, to suggest that he has the tools to create something that lives up to his goal of ‘connecting with the listener in a meaningful way.’ More attention to structure and form are needed and making the chorus the selling point; you’ve got the melodies, make it big and hammer home the message. I wish him every success with it.

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Signs of promise within GS Flipp’s first short outing. All the tools are there but a decision need to be made – innovate or replicate?
Good Melodies And Narrative


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Vocal Performance


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About Author

Gareth Johnston

Gareth Johnston is a Lancashire based musician and producer who studied music at MMU. He is a former reviewer for 'Glitzine' and when not writing for 'The Indie Grid' can be found restoring old furniture whilst listening to obscure alt-rock. He has too many favourite bands to pick one and insists it's easier to pick a favourite child.

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