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Released: 2020

Features: MF DOOM

On the surface, “Meathead” by Bishop Nehru featuring MF DOOM is a heady brew of intricate rap verses. But let’s simmer down this gumbo of slick wordplay and linguistic gymnastics to its bare-bones essence. The track spins a story of survival, resilience, and fierce ambition, set against a backdrop of gritty urban realism and a relentless pursuit of authenticity in the cutthroat world of hip hop.

Right off the bat, “I sip a hot tea, watchin’ Archie flip on Meathead.” Bishop Nehru sets the stage with a nod to the ’70s sitcom All in the Family, referenced through its characters Archie and Meathead. This line situates the track in a realm of reflective observation and critique, much like the sitcom’s renowned dissection of societal issues.

The subsequent lines, “Lead, wheat, and gluten free, he is who he is, is who he be. Mind your biz for me” hammer on the emphasis on authenticity, shrugging off societal expectations and affirming self-identity. Not to mention, it’s a playful nod to diet trends – a tongue-in-cheek way of showing how he’s different from the rest.

When he spits, “Shogun, invisible armor level five”, Nehru equates himself to a powerful samurai, his ‘invisible armor’ symbolizing his resilience and invincibility. The lyric “Own the daylight and the night life, they bite trife. From thug to bug to happy-go-lucky shit” enforces his omnipresence in every facet of the game and underscores his adaptability in a sea of imitators – the ‘bite trife’.

The subsequent verses double down on the theme of transformation and resilience. “When I die, fuck it, I guess I prefer me goin’ to hell. Because earth is truly the same, so the difference I’ll never tell. He send it like it’s the mail, Captain Bishy set his sail.” Life’s hellish challenges are embraced as a formative crucible rather than a dreaded doom. It ties back to the concept of seeking authenticity, choosing to navigate life’s turbulence assertively rather than being swept in its currents.

The line, “Excel like Microsoft on all of these other fails”, is a classic Nehruan double entendre and clever wordplay. The obvious metaphor is the comparison of his success (‘Excel’) to the ubiquitous and leading software (‘Microsoft’) juxtaposed to others’ failures.

“Quit with the ignorance, the emperor’s legitimate. And learn to never give a shit, they never gettin’ it, I’m makin’ it clear, all the haze took focus as these jokers appear.” Here, ‘the emperor’ is a self-crowning – asserting his place on the throne of the rap game and leaving no room for ignoramus claims.

The lines “He save face, no brakes, I’m just peepin’ the rear. And I been livin’ out of love, they livin’ in they fear, I change ways, I’m cruisin’, but never changin’ the gears” further strengthen Nehru’s call to be true to himself while highlighting the fear-based actions of his peers.

Overall, “Meathead” is a striking lyrical journey through resilience, self-certainty, and dominance in the face of adversity, delivered with Nehru’s innovative rhymes and MF DOOM’s inimitable style.

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