Music

The Snow King: Pusha T’s Best Verses


 

I woke up this morning in Daytona. All I had in my pocket was a flip phone, a few Euros, a folded menu for Chinese takeout. The phone rang. A faint voice said “Rank Pusha T’s best verses” then it hung up. I felt like I had to take heed. So here are my favorite Pusha T verses.

 

10. Rainy Dayz

When it rains it pours
The more the doors lift up the more the feds won’t give up
Watchin’ my every move the treasure chest is the pickup
A nigga with a gun and the juice I am Bishop
Trynna throw a studder in my step like a hiccup
Niggas on the corner testing me like a piss cup
My piss ain’t dirty hope they know that my gun is
Child out of place I won’t hesitate to punish
I ain’t gonna talk to Russ the way Run is
Powder in my past reminisce on the tonnage
Add in the present and call it the second coming
I apologize for the destruct and decay
That was brought upon by my Liberace key play
Twist metaphors to avoid sounding cliche
Nancy Reagan dead Ronald put it in the PJ’s
80’s baby when the mayhem was born
I wear the rainy dayz like I was made for the storm

You really missed something if you never checked out the We Got It For Cheap mixtape series. Through these mixtapes, Clipse and other members of The Re-Up Gang sparred verbally to keep their skills sharp. “Rainy Dayz” is on Vol. 3 back during the peak of the Lil Wayne and Baby beef.


 

9. Alone in Vegas

They’ll do everything in their power
Stomp near the stove when you’re rising like flour
Make your cake fall when you threatening their tower
It’s 911 you’re on your 25th hour
Hasta la vista I’m steppin’ out the bleachers
How the tide turns when the pupil’s now the teacher
The game can’t grow by just followin’ the leaders
You gotta be better than the ones who precede, yeah

“Alone in Vegas” is one of Pusha T’s most introspective songs. It still carries the same bravado as his normal songs because you know…coke.


8. Numbers on the Board

Mix drug and show money, Biggs Burke on tour
25 bricks, move work like chore
Hit Delaware twice, needed 25 more
I see flaw, cracks in your diamond
CB4 when you rhyme, Simple Simon
Come and meet the pieman, a must that I flaunt it
The legend grows legs when it comes back to haunt us
Ballers, I put numbers on the boards
Can’t a bitch livin’ say I bought her Michael Kors
Every car driven was decided by the horse
Keep the sticker in the window ‘case you wonder what it cost

Secret: Initially, I hated “Numbers on the Board”. It took me a few listens to like it now it’s probably one of my favorite Pusha T songs. The wordplay in this song is immaculate.


7. Drug Dealer’s Anonymous

Drug dealers anonymous
How many Madonnas can that Mazda fit?
My brick talk is more than obvious, it’s ominous
Garages, the phantom, ghouls, ghosts and goblins
Blonde mohawk the collection I’m Dennis Rodman
The money count is the only moment of silence
Cause hush money balances all this drugs and violence
Hat trick under my mattress
Date I stop still has an asterisk after it
After all I can make a call
I can baptize a brick
As I wash away my sins like a catholic
Who the fuck ain’t mastered this

This song is a loosie but the verse is still an instant classic. Pusha’s verse is good enough to save the song from being derailed by Jay-Z’s “damn Daniel” line.


6. King Push

Carry on like a carry on, on my side bitch I let tag along
Call me “daddy” from a complex
‘Cause her mother’s fucker wouldn’t marry mom
No excuses, no regard
Step on the brick like a promenade
Twenty thousand on calling cards
And I’m speaking Spanish like Don Omar

Remember when we thought Joaquin Phoenix produced this song? Fun times. It’s actually produced by the son of Connie Nielsen, Sebastian Sator.

And Kanye West. Because he has to reproduce everything. Anyway, “King Push” is short and sweet but offers a few slick lines.


5. So Appalled

Success is what you make it, take it how it come
A half a mil in twenties like a billion where I’m from
An arrogant drug dealer, the legend I become
CNN said I’d be dead by twenty-one
Blackjack, I just pulled an ace
As you looking at the king in his face
Everything I dream, motherfuckers, I’m watching it take shape
While to you I’m just a young rich nigga that lacks faith
Range Rove, leather roof, love war, fuck a truce
Still move a bird like I’m in bed with Mother Goose
Them hoes coming in a baker’s dozen
Claiming they was with me when they know they really wasn’t
I keep the city’s best, never said she was the brightest
So if you had her too, it don’t affect me in the slightest
I never met a bitch that didn’t need a little guidance
So I dismiss her past until she disappoints your highness
I speak the gospel, hostile
Tony doing time for what he did to nostrils
Paranoid mind, I’m still under the watchful
Eye of the law, aspire for more
Them kilos came, we gave you Bobby Brown jaw
Flaws ain’t flaws when it’s you that makes the call
Flow similar to the legends of the falls
Spill it, I own you all

Everybody (minus Jay-Z) brought their A-game on this song. While I still like Cyhi’s verse the most on this song, I still think Pusha T’s is second, if not tied for first.


4. Crutches, Coffins, Caskets

The only asterisk is the change of address
My infinity pool as long as Magic’s
Yeah I let Zillow change my pillows
The home is so inviting, the Porsche is the armadillo
The silhouette
The pop, pop, pop; the chop, chop, chop
The throwaway TEC’s got Tourettes
It’s more than this drug money, I love money
I speak to your soul and that’s above money
This the ministry of street energy
The church of criminology, teaching my chemistries
I’m the L. Ron Hubbard of the cupboard
To some certain motherfuckers gotta love it

Only Pusha T can call his car bulletproof by comparing it to an animal with an exoskeleton, make gun sounds, then make a Scientology reference. This song shows how he raps effortlessly.


3. I Don’t Like [extended]

Fraud niggas, ya’ll niggas
That’s that shit I don’t like
Yo shit, make believe
Rappin’ ’bout my own life
Real names, kill things
That’s that shit I won’t write
Cause my niggas still sellin’ dope
Like they ain’t on they third strikes
That’s rare nigga, Ric Flair nigga
The powers in my hair nigga
I give the beat the chair nigga
Soho or Tribeca
3 hoes, trifecta
Dope money, coke money
Hublot, my watch better
My pens better, you don’t write
Trendsetter you clone like
Pay homage or K’s vomit?
Ungrateful niggas I don’t like

Are there better Pusha T verses than this? Of course. Is there another Pusha T verse that set a whole summer of fire? Probably not.


2. Keys Open Doors

Make your skin crawl
Press one button, let the wind fall
Who gonna stop us? Fuck the coppers!
The mind of a kilo shopper
Seeing my life through the windshields of choppers
I ain’t spend one rap dollar in 3 years, holla!
Money’s the leash, drag a bitch by her dog collar
Now, ho follow, this is my ghetto story
Like Cham, Ice-P is the Don Dada
Open the Frigidaire, 25 to life in here
So much white you might think your holy Christ is near
Throw on your Louis V millionaires to kill the glare
Ice trays? Nada! All you see is pigeons paired
The realest shit I ever wrote, not Pac inspired
It’s crack pot inspired, my real niggas quote
Bitch never cook my coke! Why? Never trust a ho with your child
At you make believe rappers I smile! HA! Canal Streeting my style
Like you internet sharing my files, you MySpace niggas
So kill the comparison, I’m South Beach sipping on Sarafin
Royalty check nigga, I never been
Coke money clean through Merrill Lynch
Accountant just gasp at the smell of it! (Gasp!)
Meet the dealer, ain’t a bitch realer
So you ain’t gotta question why Pusha don’t feel ya!
Knock it the fuck off!

For my money, this is the quintessential Clipse song. If I had one song to make someone a Clipse song, this would be it. It’s sinister but that adds to the charm of Hell Hath No Fury. So why isn’t this verse number 1…?


1. What Happened to That Boy

Another soul lost
Had to make his shirt match my oxblood-colored Porsche
The rims match, of course
Blood hit his Timbs, it reminded me of them
Glistening, wrist on chiller
Gun in the same palm, a gorgeous killa
I put this on my Lord
My niece was four when she felt chinchilla
I passed the chauffeur that shit
That made fiends rise from the dead like “Thriller”
Gangster, hustler
At night, still found time to kiss my mother
Live like I’m dreaming, kick my feet up
Gun poked my waist, remind me of my demon
So quit your yappin’ before I get to clappin’
And have your body parts mix and matchin’, fella

This verse is not only Pusha T’s best verse, it’s one of the best guest verses period. I can’t remember Birdman’s verse, not that any of his verses are memorable. Malice’s verse is good but I always skip it to get straight to this verse. What’s most impressive about Pusha T’s lyricism is how quickly he can take a verse in a different direction while keeping it seamless. The best line in this verse (“Glistenin, wrist on chiller, gun in the same palm, a gorgeous killer”) is overshadowed because it’s sandwiched between two other dope lines. I was already a Clipse fan at this point but this verse made me realize Pusha T was on a different level.

Honorable mentions: “Illin”, “Footsteps”, “Mama I’m So Sorry”

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