Excuse My French

Nothing gets to French Montana. The Moroccan-American MC has scored a string of hits on the strength of his luxuriously unhurried flow, slinging street dreams in the cadences of a sleepy don. The beats on his major-label debut range from bleak to triumphal to jackhammer-manic; none of it seems to make a difference to French, who spills syllables in the same rich slurry nearly every time. He’s a man of few words – many of his hooks consist of a single staccato phrase, looped until it verges on nonsense. When these mantras connect, they’re indelible. When they don’t, it’s like being smacked in the face repeatedly with an iced-out chain.