Tupac’s poem dedicated to Vincent Van Gogh includes a line that reads: “and though u pour yourself into that frame and present it so proudly this world could not accept your masterpieces from the heart.” This sentiment echoes the same troubled and emotional complexities that Coca Vango presents in his new project, also dedicated to the late iconic painter and visionary.
Coca Vango has really been through it. From getting kicked out of high school to spending time in jail, his experiences have earned him a necessarily tough outer shell that only selectively through his music does he reveal a sensitive side. In turn, this intricate dynamic presents a clear parallel between himself and Van Gogh—their perspectives are mysteriously woven deep within their creative expressions of unapologetic self.
Lyrically, Vango isn’t sugarcoating anything whatsoever in his new mixtape, Van Gogh, and it’s hard not to love him for that, even if some of the content is too blunt for the taste of some. The project is a testament to keeping it 100 while also creating a soundtrack full of what can only be described as hustler anthems. As an introduction to his sound, he covers a lot of ground sonically in regards to his production choices but each track’s vibe holds a common thread: it will get listeners out of any funk and focused on what they need to be focused on, whether it’s getting work done, filling one’s wallet, impressing the opposite sex or whatever else. Hustler anthems.
Vango is smart with the direction of his production, with the beats fitting his aesthetic with veteran ease. He’s found what works for him but isn’t limited by one lane either. Despite only having a couple projects under his belt, Van Gogh has elevated his reach to a new level, one that the rapper/rhyme singer is embracing fully. He also keeps his features minimal, calling on guest verses to tactfully help create another layer to the world he’s created in Van Gogh.
Taking his backstory into consideration as a bit of an underdog, it’s that much more exciting and enjoyable to celebrate his successes. Vango makes it easy to root for him, with standout tracks being “Real One,” “Glass House” featuring Caskey, “Oh Yeah,” and “New To Me,” all creating a starry night world all his own for listeners to get lost in.
Check out his project below, aptly out on 4:20pm today April 20, via DatPiff.