“I don’t like you,” Matty Dee said, describing his mentality on life. “No, not you personally,” he clarifies with a sly chuckle. “We’re nasty-ass creatures. We eat horrible things. The human race sucks. Not every human sucks, but the race in general is pretty shitty.” Although bold for a 20-year-old, Matty Dee’s contentions are salient, given his history.
Austin-based rapper Matty Dee, known as MattyDeeTwo40s within music circles, moved to Austin after finishing high school in Odessa to study business and build a name for himself — the radical juxtaposition between conservative, rural Texas to its most liberal, urban environment proved an unique experience.
Even so, Dee’s dark worldviews are the result of experiences that happened long before his relocation: “I started taking a lot of pills when I was in high school,” he said. According to Dee, Odessa was riddled with drugs. “In Odessa, it’s just so plentiful. Everywhere you turn, it’s there.”
Despite his affinity for drugs at the time, the main reason why he decided to leaving was to escape from Odessa’s intense narcotics culture.
The rapper used drugs to quell dark parts of his past. “My parents split when I was five and my dad was really never around. I just grew up without a dad. I was always looking for a father figure and I guess drugs ended up being my father figure. I was raised by the computer and drugs,” he said. Dee had no qualms about his past drug history though. “I write my best stuff on pills,” he said.
Dee isn’t exaggerating. His mellow, nasally flow is reminiscent of rising artist Mac Miller and New York’s socially conscious rapper, Cage. Like Cage, who Matty Dee cites as an influence, his raps cross into a compelling realm in an extremely twisted way. His song, “The Lion and The Bull Part 2,” tells a story in which he has an affair with someone in a relationship, leavened with occasional commentary on the immorality of the ordeal. The ethics of the situation is contrasted with lyrics on the attractiveness of the girl. The hook of one of his most recent songs, “I Get High,” is simply Dee ominously stating, “We’re all dead already. Why cry?”
Outside of girls and dark observations on life, like Cage, Dee cites punk rock acts as some of his biggest influences.
“I love The Dead Kennedy’s and Cerebal Ballzy,” Dee said, after arriving clad in a Bad Religion T-shirt. Dee, like many of hip-hop’s up-and-comers (like Odd Future and Kid Cudi), is amongst a new generation of rappers that look to punk rock for inspiration, instead of artists solely within their own genre. That likeness may help his ascent, especially within the Austin scene, already riddled with artists who operate within archetypal rap paradigms.
Despite Dee’s obvious foreboding, aggressive side, he’s actually carries a jovial swagger in step and his face rests in a natural, goofy smile.
“Everyone needs a person like Matty Dee in their clique,” said Elles Infanite, a fellow Austin rapper and friend. “He’s always making everyone laugh.”
“He’s playing with a lot of better rappers on the scene,” Infanite said. “It’s to the point where I can listen to his music without skipping a track.”
After his arrival in Austin more than a year ago, Dee has hit the ground running, moving far past his history of rural drug abuse. He’s established connections with the city’s most prominent rappers, DJs and venue owners. He’s even branched out on the business end of things; Dee and Infanite are starting a music blog and merchandise website called Lot B, slated to launch by November.
Despite Dee pursuing a degree in business and pursuing entrepreneurial ventures, the rapper has no intention of doing anything in his life that isn’t centered around his music. “There is no plan B,” he said. “I’m gonna rap.”
Printed on Friday, August 26, 2011 as: Drugs, dark themes influence rapper.