Top Ten Best Things About Spongebozz's Album "Started from the Bottom / Krabbenkoke Tape"As I created this list, SpongeBozz's seconf album has been out for a week. It is easily one of the greatest, if not the greatest German hip hop album I heard. This list is to explain why it is so awesome.
The Top Ten
In the opening track, the first verse rhymes with the phrase "Started From the Bottom" throughout. While the entire verse contains more words, I listed all of the rhymes down below to demonstrate that I'm not exaggerating:
Started from the Bottom / Badepromenaden / Stahlbetonfassaden / (A)K-Geschosse hageln / Jahre Loch im Magen / Ma gekomm'n I'm Wagen / Pain wird weggeblasen / (Plankton) hazeknolle atmen / Krabbenkokanasen / Schwarzgeldkonten stapeln / Bares aus den Bubbles / Ware auf dem Wagen / Jahre auf ihn warten / Schaden (the) von getragen / schwarz und voller Narben / damals schon cold-blooded / Mama Gott bewahre / Magnumtrommeln lade / Radiosong vermarkten / starken Woche charten / Capri Sonne starten / Status Gold zu jagen / Tages offenbaren / Started From the Bottom
I don't know how he manages to make beats that are so overproduced and blockbuster-ish and still be so unknown. SpongeBozz is famous in Germany, but no one gives shoutouts to his amazing producer. I don't even know who he is. Or even if it's even a him. Could also be a woman or a group. It's as if they only existed in the booklet of the album.
"Started From the Bottom" is a 9 minute epic storytelling song and my favorite of all the tracks, but in terms if epicness nothing beats the 18:30 minute long "Apocalyptic Infinity". He's lyrically and musically slaughtering the German rap scene and demands the recognition he deserves and never got (many of the things now trending were introduced by him but back then he was negatively received) for over ten minutes at two different tempos. Then the mood changes, the beat gets more dramatic and dark, his vocal delivery turns more serious and he takes aim at Kollegah - his former friend turned archenemy. It feels like a death sentence and execution (if it wasn't Kollegah, Germany's most popular and acclaimed superstar rapper at the moment, I'd be worried about his reputation after this).
On the disc, SpongeBozz often doesn't shy away from sharing his anger and disappointment with the injustice and unfairness of how he was treated in the past, making this a much more personal record than his debut.
The variety of flows in "Apocalyptic Infinity" alone is more than what most rappers are capable of. Just listen to it in all its 18:30 minutes glory. Even if you skip some parts, you will notice his flow has changed in the meantime.
And musically, we get epic orchestral beats, dark electronic beats, rock inspired beats, latino inspired beats, trap inspired beats, eurodance inspired beats, oldschool inspired beats,...
SpongeBozz has already showed his unusual lyrical skill since he first appeared in the JuliensBlogBattle internet video rap battle tournament in 2013, but it's the first time he does not only portray a persona but actually lets out a lot of anger that he has dammed up for years. Yet, the disc also has brighter moments that show his love for a catchy song - and it works in the context. Even with all of the injustice and unfairness around he still loves what he is doing. All in all, we get a good insight of Dimitri Chpakov.
Before becoming SpongeBozz, Dimitri Chpakov was Sun Diego, who was sometimes featured on Kollegah's songs. They were also friends. In that time, he tried to establish a distinctive style that, apart from double time flows and multisyllabic rhyming also included sung autotune hooks. He was panned for the latter, so much that it doomed his career. At the same time, Kollegah became German hip hop's superstar and apparently simply dumped Sun Diego - probably expecting him to not make it as a rapper. This is where it all began. In 2013, he came back as SpongeBozz and became famous himself, with his true identity kept secret - until 2017 (there have been numerous rumors though). Now, he spreads everything that he has witnessed back then, and also attacks other people that attacked him along the way.
While "Started From the Bottom" is simply the more interesting disc to analyze because it's more personal, "Krabbenkoke Tape" is SpongeBozz the way he became famous, as a homicidal anarchic druggy cartoon character who shoots first and then talks. If you are into that kind of humor, this is perfect, especially at such a high quality lyrical level.
And costs as much as any other album. And he really put effort into the lyrics and music. There are no skits or intros or whatever. 13 tracks on each disc.
In German rap, there is kind of a debate whether realness or a stage persona is the right thing. The latter is the more common, many famous and acclaimed rappers play roles, but there is a newer movement demanding authenticity. Authentic rappers usually are less lyrically and technically complex, but therefore care more about feeling the music.
Now, on the "Started From the Bottom" disc, it's mostly Dimitri Chpakov rapping, and he addresses what bothers him personally. On the "Krabbenkoke Tape" disc, he raps in-character as SpongeBozz just like before. It's a crazy over the top Hollywood-like show, which is exactly what he has been popular for. I think it's great he split the album into two separate parts because the tone is different ("Rhythm is a Gangster" should have been on the second disc though).