Over the last several years, the Milwaukee Hip Hop scene has been steadily gaining traction. In 2023, more Milwaukee Hip Hop artists are becoming popular online than ever. One of the first rappers from Milwaukee to start to get big in the 2010s was Wave Chapelle. Wave Chapelle first tasted success in 2014 when his It’ll All Make Sense Soon went semi-viral, leading to him getting signed to Yo Gotti’s label. After learning from Yo Gotti for a few years, Wave Chapelle returned home to Milwaukee and became one of the leaders of the current Milwaukee Hip Hop scene. Wave Chapelle has been very prolific in his output over the last few years. In 2020, he released his album Waves Don’t Die. In 2021, he put out one song a week, with each month having its own four-song EP; in total, that is 52 songs on 12 different EPs. In 2022, he came out with a collaborative album with Cody Ray that was called Winner’s Circle. In addition to all of this music he has put out, Wave Chapelle also frequently posts freestyles on his Instagram and Tik Tok pages. Wave Chapelle is constantly working on his craft and publishing new music and content for people to enjoy. If you are a Milwaukee Bucks fan and went to a game in 2023, you probably saw Wave Chapelle or at least heard some of his music, as he is an ambassador for the team that goes to almost every game and his music is played in the stadium all of the time. Wave Chapelle has returned in 2023 with a new project where he collaborates with the producer Menebeats called Can’t Stop Won’t Stop. Here is my review of that project. Please let me know in the comments below how you feel about Can’t Stop Won’t Stop, and also comment what your favorite song on this project is.
Wave Chapelle gets this EP started with the song ‘Won’t Stop.’ This song has an aggressive instrumental that sounds like a fusion of early 2000s Club Hip Hop music and present-day fast Trap music. Specifically, the song feels like a 2023 version of songs like Too Short’s ‘Blow The Whistle.’ I love how distorted and rough the bassline is on the song; the buzzing nature of the bass gives the song so much emphasis. This bass line is paired with a speedy Hi-hat beat that makes me want to dance and party when I hear it. Wave Chapelle raps with a speedy and aggressive flow that goes super well with the instrumental. Wave Chapelle’s vocal tone and speed in which he raps make ‘Won’t Stop’ feel super gritty and energetic. ‘Won’t Stop’ is a great way to start this project, as it engages the listener right from the start. The next song, ‘Going In,’ is just as rugged as the song that precedes it, even though it is a bit calmer. Similar to the first song on the record, it sounds like a current take on some popular Hip Hop from the early 2000s. Specifically, there is something about this instrumental that made me think about some of the music by Jay Z in the late 1990s and early 2000s. If Jay-Z were to come out now and he made underground, assertive Trap music, this is the kind the music that I would imagine he would make. This song has a punchy beat that is pretty slow that is put over a dark keyboard melody that is accompanied by various synths and sound effects. Wave Chapelle raps with a smooth and bold flow and vocal style on this track that makes it feel more powerful. ‘Going In’ is an old-school-esque Trap banger that is easy-going and bold at the same time. ‘Vision’ is the most modern-sounding song on the record to this point. It is a track that brings in elements of the kind of Hip Hop music Milwaukee rappers are usually known for. This song has a slow Drill music feeling to it that is very brash and in your face. The song contains a creepy and downtrodden melody that has a warped sound to it. This melody is put over an intense Drill beat that is highlighted by a distorted and jarring bass line and an off-kilter Hi-Hat beat. The instrumental for this song is extremely forceful, and Wave Chapelle’s rapping style on the track is just as vigorous as the instrumental. Wave Chapelle raps ferocity and fervor on this track, adding to the already audacious nature of the track. He constantly switches up his flow, which keeps the listener engaged and on their toes. ‘Vision’ is an excellent Drill song that is for those people that love powerful Hip Hop music.
Wave Chapelle shows off a completely different side to his artistry on the song ‘Float,’ which features fellow Milwaukee star Ishdarr. This track has a soft and sweet R&B Trap sound that has an otherworldly feeling to it. The melody on this song feels romantic and atmospheric at the same time. This melody is put over a slow, sultry Trap beat that makes the song feel even more sexy and trippy. Wave Chapelle raps with a silky and tranquil flow that is perfect for this instrumental. Ishdarr sing-raps his voice with a raspy tone that provides a nice and rough contrast to the subdued nature of Wave Chapelle’s vocals. ‘Float’ is a seductive R&B track that has elements to its sound that make me feel like I am literally on the Moon or in Space. ‘Already’ continues on the psychedelic R&B Trap sound that the song before it had. Insead of feeling romantic or seductive, though, this song feels hot and hazy. There is something about ‘Already’ that makes me think of California when I hear it. This track has such a summer feeling to it. The melody, which sounds like it is being provided by synthesized chimes or bells, has a tone that makes me want to drink a spiked lemonade on a beach somewhere. The beat on this track has an relaxed Trap tempo that adds to the hazy feeling of the instrumental. Wave Chapelle raps with an even-keeled pace on this track that fits this instrumental nicely. He does rap with a little more strength and robustness than when may expect, though, and this gives his flow a good juxtaposition with the instrumental. ‘Already’ is a track track that I can imagine would be awesome to listen to while driving around while smoking while the sun is setting on a warm summer day. Wave Chapelle brings back some of the intensity we saw earlier on the record with the song ‘Automatic.’ This song is driven by a simple Synth-driven melody that is put over a raucous Trap beat. The bass on this song is so strong, and it drives the energy of the track through the roof. Even if instrumental is pretty uncomplicated at its core, it sure hit hard. Wave Chapelle raps with a great amount of fervor and urgency on this track, giving it a motivating feeling. Automatic’ is the kind of song that would be great to listen to before going to the gym or playing a sport, as it will pump the listener up. Wave Chapelle closes out Can’t Stop Won’t Stop with the song ‘Honest – Remix’ featuring Jace. This song has an ominous tone to it. The melody for this track is so downtrodden and dire; paired with this slow yet hard-hitting Trap beat, it gives the song a menacing element that is very cool. It has the kind of sound I would expect to hear right before a massive, violent climax in a show or movie. Wave Chapelle raps with a higher and more severe-sounding tone and a steady flow that gives the song even more threatening. Jace’s flow is equally deliberate and impactful; his lower, gruffer tone supplies variance to the song from the higher pitch that Wave Chapelle raps with. ‘Honest – Remix’ is a tough and sinister Trap track that sends this project out with a bang.
One of my favorite things about Wave Chapelle has always been his ability to adapt and make many kinds of Hip Hop music. He is an artist that can seemingly never be put in a box, as he can do pretty much anything when it comes to Hip Hop and will always be able to try new things within the genre. Despite the fact that Can’t Stop Won’t Stop is a pretty brief project, is diversity as a Hip Hop artist is evident on this project. In 7 songs, Wave Chapelle shows a great amount of range on Can’t Stop Won’t Stop; throughout these very different sounding tracks, Wave Chapelle’s quality as a rapper never fades. Can’t Stop Won’t Stop by Wave Chapelle and Menebeats is a brief yet varied Hip Hop project that shows how Wave Chapelle of the most talented rising Hip Hop artists from Milwaukee(and in the game in general) right now.