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Famous Dex Coming To Toad's Place

Special to The Courant

Chicago's Famous Dex is a prolific rapper. In 2016 he released a couple mixtapes, an album and a handful of singles. He just released a collaboration with A$AP Rocky in time for Halloween last month. He sounds as manic as the output would suggest.

There's something unhinged about Dex's style, with the vocal tracks layered, offset and distorted by the staggered overlap and interplay. Dex makes what's known as drill music, a grimy Chicago cousin of trap. Overdoing it is sort of the ethos of Dex's raps, taking conspicuous consumption — designer goods, marijuana, sex, pills, and expensive cars — and trying to one-up it. Horror-movie vibes are to 21st century hip-hop as James Brown samples were to hip-hop of the '90s. Dex has worked with Atlanta rappers Rich the Kid and Lil Yachty.

Like his peers, Dex goes for a wobbly and crazed sound, wedging in exclamations — "ooh-ooh" — and letting delay effects set up trippy ripples and tugs in the surface of the songs. Dex can repeat a line so many times that it starts to morph into a rhythmic phrase, devoid of meaning, like on "Who Told You I Was The Man." Sometimes he raises his pitch as if he were about to snap at the end of each line. He sounds delirious, but he's confident.

Famous Dex will perform at Toad's Place, 300 York St., New Haven, on Sunday, Nov. 12, at 9 p.m. Tickets are $30., 203-624-8623.

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