A 1-Listen review of Money Badoo’s ‘PORN$TAR’

There’s a lot to like about PORN$TAR and, by extension, Money Badoo

In 2020, Money Badoo caught her first rounds of attention as part of a complementary duo, alongside close friend and collaborator Sauwcy. The pair released ‘MK-Ultra’, a bite-sized EP loaded with intoxicating trap cuts. While that joint debut was partly rooted in vivid chemistry between the two artists, it also showcased their individual powers, with Sauwcy’s gruff cadence playing the more orthodox counterpoint to the eccentric charm of Badoo’s ethereal wheeze.

A year out from the Blxckie-assisted “LIL BIH (Remix)” and their entry into NATIVE’s uNder (previously titled Fresh Meat) series highlighting exciting, nascent artists, Money Badoo has taken definitive steps in carving out her path as a solo act. In addition to guest appearances on songs by lordkez, Doowap and more, she’s shared a handful of singles, and the grip of releases have seen her dabble into downbeat trapsoul, amapiano, and hyperpop-inflected rap. All of that has set an expectant tone for her solo debut project, PORN$TAR’, released today.

Money Badoo has shown herself to be capable of pulling multiple tricks, albeit in limited bursts. PORN$TAR’ is her chance to pull those highlights into a searing performance. Let’s get into it.


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In Usual 1-Listen Review Fashion, All Reactions Are In Real-Time While The Music Plays. No Pauses, Rewinds, Fast-Forwards, Or Skip.

“K.R.E.A.M (Intro)” [feat. Maglera Doe Boy]

This opening is ominous, a bit hair-raising even. This is an interesting start to the project, replete with gruff sounds and loud barks.

“g2g” (feat. lordkez)

This is quite the build-up, I can already tell it’s going to knock. “I’ve been doing better, baby” is a very lordkez lyric, she always sings from a place of lived-in assurance. And that voice, balmy and soothing. That’s Money Badoo, took a minute for her to slide in, but it’s worth the wait. This beat is amazing, it’s like riding on a pink cloud. “g2g” is wildly different from the last collab from this two, and they still don’t have to force the chemistry. I already know I’m going to spin this an insane amount of times.

“Gone Girl”

Even from the squeak and piano, I can tell this beat is fire. I mean, I’m barely two songs in but I’m tempted to praise Badoo’s ear for beats. Her flow is engaging, much sturdier but she’s adding melodic tricks and cadence tweaks to keep things interesting. “See me move, they trying/I get money five ways” sounds like an Instagram-ready caption. I’ll need to revisit this to hear every line, but this amazing on the music side. Of course, there’s an electric guitar to close things out.

“47K$” (w/Ricky Tyler)

Lead single time. I found this song out through the music video, and it was quite the worthwhile experience. Think I even watched twice, I can even picture it now. This is corny in the way romantic duo ballads are meant to be. The fact that Money Badoo can go from imposing rap flows to featherweight singing with losing her light touch as a performer is pretty great. Ricky Tyler was on uNder a while back, too, by the way. I think we have great ears at The NATIVE. This is a good song.

“Your Way”

This is a bit grungier than previous song. Money Badoo is luxuriating in the pocket but she’s still commanding my attention. “I can never flop, if I got you then we gon make it” is a romantic sentiment, but it’s line that works beyond its intended setting. That’s one of the hallmarks of relatable writing, it doesn’t work in a rigid framework. These songs are quite short, I would’ve liked this one to stretch out a bit, but I definitely won’t be skipping on the playback.


Every song so far has its moment of bated breath, where chords build-up to unfurl gorgeous beats. This one is no different, a muted bounce with wavy synths. It’s almost impossible to overstate just how soft and warm Badoo’s voice. Next to plush beats, it’s just wondrous. There’s the brief switch to a rap flow. How does she sound so wounded and inviting at the same time? Will need a replay for this, but I can’t call it a skip.


I have to wait for a few seconds before I type because of these build-ups. I’m not mad. This is the closest thing on this tape to MK-Ultra. Hearing “I just pistol popped that bitch” in an operatic cadence is nothing if not intriguing. This is rambunctious and sensuous enough to work in a strip club, beyond that, I don’t know. These lyrics are a bit stock, and that robotic flow isn’t doing much for me. This beat, though. Very good. I wish this was much shorter, possibly my first mehhh on this album.

“100 DAY$” (w/Sliqe & Yanga Chief)

Okay, pick me up. Money Badoo sounds sweet and foreboding over this blown out bass. Yeah, this is more like it. Two lines just caught my ears but I’m so fixated on how impossibly smooth this flow is, so I can’t recall either one. Yanga Chief isn’t letting the energy wane, he’s picked up the baton with purpose. Couple of nice bars, nothing to crazy caught me. This one slaps, might be a keeper on second listen.

“cum 2 me”

This has been an immersive experience so far, but all these build-ups haven’t made for great transitions. From the title, this was going to be sensual. It’s living up to the expectations, though. This is late night, owl hours, carnal intentions music. Perfect for that private strip session playlist. This is the song you send ahead of a sneaky link, with the purple devil emoji as a caption. I think I’ve dropped too many descriptions. Let’s just say I like this one.


Last song. What would the hybridisation of rap and R&B sound like with no guitars? Yeah, this beat is absolutely gorgeous. Badoo’s voice barely goes above a whisper, she understands this assignment. I think this song is the second side of one-two punch with “cum 2 me.” I like this song, even more as a closer.

Final Thoughts

In a time when there’s a premium on versatility and honing a hybrid skill-set, Money Badoo is doing her best to stand out positively. Embedded within the ten tracks of her debut album, is the image of an artist confident in her strengths while still figuring out the developing facets of her abilities. PORN$TAR’ is a remarkable showing of Badoo’s equal standing as a singer and a rapper. On the drop of a dime, she coos soft melodies and delivers irreverent bars, playing around with her delivery range to great results.

‘PORN$TAR’ also emphasises her ear for immaculate beats, with a lush and subtly ebullient soundscape filled with gentle guitar plucks, scuzzy synths, gently thudding bass, and varying types of instrumental flourishes. Ranging from luxuriant singing to tastefully attacking pockets, Money Badoo commands the sonic environment around her with apt levels of grace and/or assertiveness.

Centred on romantic trysts and cutthroat boasts, the writing on PORN$TAR’ won’t floor anyone, but it’s consistently engaging and relatable. Most importantly, there’s a lived-in essence to Badoo’s lyricism, which balances out the sometimes surreal edge of her musical choices. There’s a lot to like about PORN$TAR’ and, by extension, Money Badoo. She’s delivered a debut project that firmly sets her on the path to greatness.

Listen to PORN$TAR’ here.

Featured image credits/MoneyBadoo