Last August, snack-sized rappers Y.N.RichKids found Internet fame with “Hot Cheetos & Takis,” racking up millions of YouTube views and causing millions of adults to Google “What are Takis?” The song, which featured seven rappers trading verses in tribute to their favorite munchables, was written as part of Minneapolis after-school program Beats and Rhymes, but its fame spread far beyond the Twin Cities school system, even meriting a review in Rolling Stone—it earned 4 stars (out of 5).
That song came out too late to be a bona fide song of the summer, but the kids’ new songs arrive just in time. The standout is tribute song “My Bike,” an ode to a subject as universal as any spicy, salty junk food. And again, they’re also paying tribute to their idols: Whereas before they were turning Kanye and Young Chris into “snacks on snacks on snacks,” here refrains of “swerve” (from songs like “Mercy”) and “pop that” (from, most famously, French Montana) are just references to cycling and wheelies. Later, they turn from jacking hip-hop hits to riffing on the “The Wheels on the Bus.”
But as always the biggest joy comes from the rappers’ distinct personas, from the Jay-Z-esque Dame Jones, who reprises his not-just-a-businessman-but-a-business-man leadership style, to “polarizing” rapper Ben10, who once again goes in hard, yelling every word without enunciating a single one. At the beginning of the video, the kids toss away their Hot Cheetos and Takis, in a nod to the original, but it’s also a way of signaling that it’s time to move on: As Lauren puts it in her closing verse, they were hot way before Cheetos and Takis.
Purists should note that the second song, “Khaki Pants,” isn’t technically a Y.N.RichKids track—it’s credited to the NSJ Crew—but it features most of the same kids all the same. As G6 explains at the beginning, the song is dedicated to “all the kids across the world that gotta wear a school uniform—but you can’t let that hold you back from swaggin’ it out.” The solution is the “khaki dance” and it’s as good and silly a candidate for next novelty dance craze as I’ve seen out there.
Only one question remains: Can we get these kids on the charts? With YouTube views sending up songs like “Harlem Shake,” I see no reason why these kids shouldn’t be next.