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    MGK Drops “BMXXing”: A Nostalgic Return to Backpack Rap

    Machine Gun Kelly taps back into his hip-hop roots with “BMXXing,” produced by BNYX. The track is a nostalgic nod to the backpack rap era: a time in hip-hop that was notably underground and do-it-yourself, focusing on complexity in lyrics and social consciousness.

    Backpack rap has been a subgenre of hip-hop, and it has undoubtedly left a lasting impression on the culture. It has influenced entire generations of artists to follow. This is probably due to the tagline that this kind of artist carries their music (literally or metaphorically) in a backpack. For many, it is associated with people who reject certain types of mainstream commercialism in favor of thoughtful lyricism and intellectually independent production.

    However, many say that backpack rap originated from the Native Tongues movement, which included Afro-centric groups known as Quest, De La Soul, and Black Sheep. These artists were known to take a different approach from the mainstream by roping in new sounds and themes. Instrumental artists defining and popularizing backpack rap include Kanye West, Talib Kweli, Mos Def, and Common.

    ‘BMXXing’, seems to take inspiration from the backpack rap era. The lyrics of the song delve into the artist’s personal struggles, emotional complexities, and ultimate resilience. The song lyrics reflect a journey through life’s challenges, with references to real-life experiences, socio-political commentary, and personal introspection. The lyrics also contain elements of resilience and determination, which are common themes in backpack rap.

    The video for ‘BMXXing’ follows MGK as he leads a pack of bikers on BMXs through the streets before making their way to a skate park. This could be seen as a representation of the backpack rap era, symbolizing the journey of an artist navigating through the industry, staying true to their roots, and leading their own path. The BMX bikes could symbolize the ‘backpack’ of the backpack rap era, carrying their music and message through the streets.

    MGK’s ‘BMXXing’ is a nod to the backpack rap era, embodying its spirit through its lyrics, music, and visuals. It showcases the richness of that time in hip-hop, characterized by thoughtful lyricism, independent production, and a focus on real-life experiences and socio-political commentary.

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