Hear Your Old Droog’s Playlist of Influences for “Dump YOD: Krutoy Edition”

The Brooklyn emcee cites Eddie Van Halen, Beethoven, and Toto as just a few of the record’s many disparate references.

When Your Old Droog appeared on the scene back in 2014, the Brooklyn-based (and Ukraine-born, as his latest project emphasizes) emcee was the latest blog-buzz, hidden-identity rapper to be presumed a Nas comeback moniker. His bars on his self-titled debut felt similar enough to his NYC antecedent that it comes as no surprise that the two were conflated—until the string of singles that followed it, culminating in his 2017 LP Packs, revealed that his frame of musical reference outside of rap extended far beyond an Iron Butterfly interpolation, and his featured guest list included names like Wiki, Heems, Danny Brown, and other underground VIPs far outside the reach of Nas’ circle.

While Droog’s identity has become considerably more distinguished with each successive release, that isn’t to say the rapper isn’t still full of surprises. His newest project, the Dump YOD: Krutoy Edition LP, continues his series of all-star guest verses (including Black Though, El-P, and billy woods) while instrumentally paying respect to his Ukrainian roots. With a mostly unexpected set of musical references on the project—as he details below in a playlist he put together for us—the record is full of left turns, from the Russian-language sample opening the intro to its bookending outro.

“This is a selection of songs and artists that were either directly referenced by me on the album, or inspired my work,” he notes. “I referenced Van Halen in ‘Babushka III’ off #DUMPYOD and it was one of the first songs I recorded for the project back in April. I’ve always been a fan of Eddie Van Halen’s guitar virtuosity and songwriting since a kid, so when he passed later in the year I definitely felt that. The classical stuff is mostly pieces or composers that were referenced in the songs. Krzysztof Penderecki also passed earlier this year. He was an incredible composer from Poland who is among one of my favorites. This year has just been crazy.”

Listen to the mix below, and stream or purchase the record here.

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