The spooky Pipe Organ chords that begin Michael Christmas' "Salty" may at first listen seem completely irrelevant and unrelated to the rest of the track proceeding it, like the funny adlibs the emcee randomly throws out from time to time. Somewhere around the fourth or fifth listen, an image of a menacing Phantom of the Opera appeared out of thin air; a mischievous hidden figure, whose only mission in life was to make yours a living hell—and then shrug his shoulders while giving your teary face an incredulous stare. It is a funny character for sure, albeit a strange one, but it still transforms the absurdity into sheer gut wrenching brilliance.
If someone were to say that, that was thinking way too much about this slapstick song, they may have a point. Michael Christmas' entire agenda on this track is to insight rage through inquiring, quite condescendingly, why his detractor is so "salty"? "Why you mad bro?" has led to countless amount of bar fights, family feuds, and one of the greatest interviews of all time (thank you Cam'ron). Saying those four words, during the heat of an argument, is equivalent to begging your opposition to smack your kufi sideways. Christmas is well aware of these factors and exploits them in the funniest of ways.
While his lyrics will make you chuckle as you listen, you have to unpack them to really understand their depth. Christmas doesn't sacrifice lyrical ability for humor in the slightest, he packs everything into one package. "Got some white folks take care of me, like to call Mr. Drummond/cause that shit funny to me, that shit funny," his fusion of experimental rhyme structure and pop cultural references makes it hard to not nod your head and relate to his lines.
"Salty" brought up an image of an annoying Phantom of the Opera in this writer's mind, but it might do something entirely different to your imagination. It's a great piece of…something, because Michael Christmas still hasn't decided if he makes art or not. Either way, you should definitely give it a spin, you will not be disappointed.