J Dews is an artist out of the 903/ East Texas area. He has just dropped his debut mixape “Nostalgia”, which takes us through different stories of his past with different women. J Dews also brags about his famous friends like Pat Mahomes on the song “East Texas Vibez”. The mixtape is available at Audiomack, Spinrilla, Datpiff and Mymixtapez. Some rappers shoot for the charts, but J Dews shoots for the stars; he wants to make music that will last forever, to be remembered as a storyteller ahead of the curve. “Nostalgia” encapsulates his ambitions as his narrative takes us back to his earlier life experiences, but it’s hard not to hear it as a statement of purpose, a formal encapsulation of J Dews focused talent as a narrator.
Kanye West or Kendrick Lamar usually seek greatness through purity of vision and depth of self-expression, Cole doubles down on classicism. His slant is a throwback to classics like Illmatic, where everything is in service of the rhymes and the storytelling. This is an recording about J Dews, an mixtape where he’s the center, the star, the whole point.
The listener’s interest in “Nostalgia” hinges on how interesting one finds J Dews, and on how much they appreciate his pure technique. Of course, it’s entirely possible to admire the mixtape without being fully persuaded by it, which is probably where a few listeners may land. J Dews is not stubbornly purist throughout though, as sometimes he may favor storytelling and literalism and at others he will be more verbally dexterous.
“Nostalgia” is the product of J Dews narrative driven rap style coming full circle into a mixtape that is emotionally captivating. The 15 track listing offers little room for filler and keeps the message in the forefront. With an astonishing amount of replay value and a narrative that induces all kinds of emotions.
I’ve always been a fan of an artist that spills their guts and shows emotion in their tracks. I’d like to think the listener can tell the difference from a genuine and fake production. This brings us to the kind of artist that J Dews is. While most of his peers are looking for the next new thing, J Dews keeps it original.
While most of the production is handled by LVNV, there are also spots for Metro Boomin, Chris Romero, Cxdy and Classixs Beats. Over these beats J Dews raps with the prowess of someone with years of experience, and you get the feeling that he’s not just blowing smoke here. And as the title says it’s nostalgic, as J Dews details episodes from his past, dipping in here and there to construct each piece of the puzzle to complete the story.
Essential tracks for me are: “These Dayz (Prod. LVNV)”, “East Texas Vibez (Prod. LVNV)”, “Rose City Flowz / Regrets (Prod. LVNV)”, “Cruizin (Swerve) [Prod. Cxdy]”, “Scrape Remix (Prod Metro Boomin)” and “Early Winter in Tyler Texas (freestyle) [Prod. Classixs Beats]”.
A confident, articulate recording, “Nostalgia” is an intensely personal setting that showcases J Dews refinement both as a rapper and as a lyricist.