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There’s been no shortage of Chance The Rapper celebration over here since we started our 31 Days of Holiday Awesome. He made our ABCs Of What Lit Up The Internet and Favourite Albums of 2016 lists, and is now receiving even more virtual applause for the surprise free Christmas mixtape he dropped yesterday with fellow Chicagoan and R&B singer Jeremiah.
In a nutshell, Merry Christmas Lil’ Mama is a nine-track Christmas miracle. 2016 could easily be deemed “the year of the surprise album release,” but there’s something extra heartwarming about an unexpected, uplifting gift like this one, after an unexpected, not-so-uplifting year like this one. Ranging from tracks like “I’m Your Santa” to “Snowed In” and “Chi Town Christmas,” most songs center around holiday love—which, even after years of pop holiday albums, is a theme we’re not growing tired of.
Despite mention of romance, family and making it home for Christmas, this ain’t no traditional Bublé release. Jeremih’s spicy croons are very present, while the album is carried by Chano’s effortless spitfire rhymes, along with appearances from more of Chicago’s finest, including Hannibal Buress, Noname and Lud Foe. Playful old-school vibes ooze through the snap beats and twinkling effects, and on lovely standouts like “Joy,” it becomes hard to imagine listening to anything else through the weekend.
While hip hop Christmas albums could warrant a second thought from some parents, we promise that these delightful 32-minutes are festive fun for the whole family. Check out Merry Christmas Lil’ Mama below.