After opening at Billboard 200’s top release, 21 Savage and Metro Boomin’s Savage Mode II was reworked and re-released by Houston legend OG Ron C. The release, titled SAVAGE MODE II [CHOPPED NOT SLOPPED] contains 14 songs, all given the Houston chopped and screwed treatment.
Chopped and screwed music started in the 90’s in Houston, pioneered of course by the late DJ Screw. The foundation of the chopped and screwed remix aesthetic lies in reducing the song’s tempo to about 60-70 beats per minute. This dramatically drops the tone of the vocal track.
On SAVAGE MODE II [CHOPPED NOT SLOPPED], 21 Savage’s matter of fact vocal delivery turns him into a robotic assailant to-be. The reduced tempo unsurprisingly gives the lyrics more time to set in. Classic DJ Screw songs like ‘Tell Me Something Good’ use the technique to accentuate the bleakness, almost to the point of hopelessness, underlying classic rap songs.
OG Ron C’s move from chopped and screwed to “chopped not slopped” underscores the evolution of screwed music, from the lofi tapes being sold by the thousands out of Screw’s house, to a more pared down blend of chopping, phasing, and of course reverb. This approach makes SAVAGE MODE II [CHOPPED NOT SLOPPED] bleed rather than cry. The grim reality of growing up in a chronically violent neighborhood is just as evident, but there is no question that Savage has reformed his ethics to fit. One for the Halloween season.
The album is available to listen to on most streaming services, including Youtube and Spotify. If you prefer physical releases–which you could even use to try your hand at scratching up yourself, vinyl presses are available for purchase at OG Ron C’s website. The site sells other releases, including RonC’s famous F*ck Action collection, a chopped up RnB LP containing memorable remixes of Twista, Usher, and other notorious street romantics.