Lil Uzi Vert takes pride in acknowledging their roots in North Philadephia’s Francisville neighborhood. With Jersey club recently breaking out from its origins in Newark — just an hour or two away from where the rapper, who uses they/them pronouns, was born and raised — it was inevitable that the always-experimental artist would dip a toe into the genre.
The result is “Just Wanna Rock,” an uptempo dance track with gothic keys that Uzi Vert dropped after it went viral on TikTok. Co-produced by MCVertt, a frequent collaborator with Jersey drill pioneer Bandmanrill, and Synthetic, who is known for working with SoundCloud revivalist Yeat, Uzi made a clear effort to pay proper homage to Jersey club.
Sparse by design, the song only features a single verse in an Auto-Tuned warble. Still, Uzi shouts out Philly’s 1600 block and makes another reference to raising their height by standing on their stacks of money. “How the fuck you gon’ kill my vibe?,” Uzi spits. “Stand on my money, don’t know my size.”
“Just Wanna Rock” is hardly Uzi’s first foray into mixing dance music with hip-hop. Ahead of their most recent album, 2020’s Eternal Atake, Uzi dropped the EDM synth-driven hit “Futsal Shuffle 2020.” The track put them ahead of the curve on the, ahem, mainstream renaissance in house and dance music driven by Beyoncé’s latest album and Drake’s Honestly Nevermind.
Now, Uzi’s back at it again, but Jersey club is likely only a pit stop ahead of The Pink Tape, though the project should feature plenty of other experimentation. “This time I went experimental with the music and traditional on the mixing,” they recently told HipHopDX.
Given the history between Uzi and their label, it could be a while before Pink Tape actually hits streaming, but “Just Wanna Rock” offers a promising preview of what’s to come.