With California, Nevada, Maine, Alaska and Massachusetts joining Colorado, Washington and Oregon in legalizing recreational marijuana as of January 1, 2018 and even more states joining the medical marijuana revolution, it’s a good time to be releasing stoner music. Maxx the Muffin Man, an 18-year-old hip hop artist out of, not surprisingly, Portland, Oregon is definitely doing his part for the cause with a new mixtape he just released called Every Summer Since, but the indie-styled rapper wants his listeners to hear more than that in his highly personal long play debut.

Maxx says he made the tape with its Wu Tang-like beats, funk and chill synths to help anyone who’s going through a hard time in life. Indeed many of his lyrics have a very personal edge to them but the tone and even some content definitely seem weed-driven. The first single “Puff is Enough”, for example, is straight-up stoner rap. On the other side, however, the title track is deeper and more biographical, however, as Maxx discusses how he found his muse. Other tracks are more party-oriented such as “Adderall and Cigarettes”, but there always seems to be a twist to each song so it’s a good listen in a more contemplative state as well.

Maxx made sure to give credit to each producer on the tracks of his mixtape, so it’s very clear that he sees himself more as a rapper than a producer but that may change. He definitely has an interesting and specific way he puts his lyrics together and this may morph into an interest in producing his own beats as he develops his sound.In the meantime, Maxx uses such plain language and timbre that some of the tracks on Every Summer Since could be seen as spoken word. The effect this has juxtaposed against the beats and grooves created by his producers is somewhat discordant, but this is likely on purpose. If it’s not, it’s certainly a fun effect and really gives listeners something to contemplate on the technical end of things as well as on the content of Maxx’s lyrics.

For an 18-year old, it’s quite shocking that, Maxx the Muffin Man has put out such a thinker in his debut album. He’s promising more material to be released but there’s a lot to get through in the meantime on Every Summer Since. Whether you’re in an altered state or not, this stoner hip hop definitely gives listeners something to think about.

Every Summer Since is out now and can be streamed on Soundcloud. Maxx’s earlier EP is available on Bandcamp as well.

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