Joseph Chilliams is the king—or rather, queen bee—of millennial pop culture references.
With a signature comedic deadpan, the West Side rapper pens lyrics that turn a wry eye on cultural objects that don’t often appear in hip hop. Case in point: Last year, in the music video for his track “Fergie," Chilliams reenacted the mesmerizing climax of 2004 cult hit Napoleon Dynamite.
On Tuesday, Chilliams released another ode to a filmic classic of 2004: The Plastics, a four-song EP inspired by Mean Girls.
The Lindsay Lohan opus may sound like goofy fodder for an album, but Chilliams is dead serious about his theme. Take the surprisingly touching “Karen’s Song,” told from the perspective of Amanda Seyfried's deeply ditzy role, or “Burn Book,” Regina George's moment on the release.
The Plastics is funny—very funny—but there's a social consciousness and surprising weight to its humor. The EP begins with a call for longevity, a poignant moment given the recent death of Chilliams’s cousin and fellow rapper Walter Long Jr., who along with Chilliams and his younger brother Saba make up the core of Austin hip-hop crew Pivot Gang.
A taste of some of the choicest (and, um, cleaned-up) lyrics from The Plastics, below.
"You Think You’re Pretty"
Friends think we’re a phase/Like Timberlake with braids
You helped me transition from jorts/Got your hair and nails souped up like spilling the borscht
Be my best friend/I don’t care if you’re my cousin/You should come over round ten
There’s a thirty percent chance it’s already raining/Should I touch myself again
What is the square root of pi/Our teacher says we have sex, we die/But I don’t believe them/No I don’t believe them
'Bout to be the next Fergie/Live my life like I’m thirty/Who want to get their a** whooped/On Smash Bros, I got Kirby
On Wednesdays we wear pink/And my team bleed Pepto Bismal/They look up to me/like a shopping spree/At the Big and Tall/at my beck and call
I'ma save me and watch you die/Like Rose at the end of Titanic
"Unfriendly Black Hotties"
You not wearing pink, you can’t hang with us/You f*** with R. Kelly, you can’t hang with us
We don’t celebrate Kwanzaa here/White folk hate me like Obamacare
The Plastics is available now on Apple Music, Spotify, Tidal, and other platforms.