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Missing-nin’s “Packaging”

Although it’s initially a little understated in terms of texture, the bassline that we encounter in Missing-nin’s “Packaging” is indeed the agent of evocation it should be in an ambitious trap track, albeit one that plays second fiddle to the lead vocalist’s dark linguistic release. Missing-nin is haunting the shadows of this beat, but as good as he is at concealing his ominous intentions, he’s definitely not capable of obstructing the natural talent he brings to any given performance. There’s a lot of tension in this single, but it’s being appropriated in such an efficient fashion that it never feels like it’s pressing against my man’s capabilities. He’s in his element, and there’s nothing strong enough to shake his confidence in this performance. 

INSTAGRAM: https://www.instagram.com/missing.nin/?hl=en

“Packaging” isn’t built around a hook, but instead the fluidity of the lyrics its creator spits before us. He’s really careful to avoid leaning on the percussion as his sole point of guidance in this track, but at the same time, he isn’t scared to let the drums overpower the bass when he makes his delivery sound a little sportier. One of the best qualities Missing-nin has going for him is his ability to swing with a groove rather than simply establishing it with a bass part, and this is a single that doesn’t just spotlight his versatility – it exists because of it. I respect the flexibility of the aesthetics here, but there’s no pushing this song into the same pile as the other hybrid content coming down the pipes right now. 

With regards to the production quality, I think it was especially smart of Missing-nin to piece together the mix DIY style rather than going with something more streamlined and commercial in tone. There’s nothing wrong with wearing the old school grit on your sleeve when it supports the substance of your performance as much as it does in “Packaging,” and despite what some of the competition might think, there’s a big difference between making a throwback and employing the same ideals as your predecessors in the name of making something as epic as the OGs did. The latter is what’s transpiring in this release, and anyone who says otherwise clearly hasn’t been listening to the beats found here. 

I’ve been getting a lot pickier about the trap that I put on my stereo these days, and the biggest reason why is players like Missing-nin. There’s just too great a gap between the quality of this piece and what some of the less than erudite forces in the mainstream half of hip-hop have been producing in the last five years, and as long as Missing-nin continues to put out content as thrilling as what we’re hearing in songs like “Packaging,” “TBH,” and “Sweetie,” he’s going to find himself soaking up a lot of lucrative fans drifting away from the watered-down beatmakers on the FM dial. “Packaging” is a straight-up gem, and I like what it says about the man managing the microphone. 

Mindy McCall

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