The Gradually Increasing Significance of Kids See Ghosts

Creating one of the most innovative albums in a respective genre, as Cudi did with MOTM, comes with the burden of astronomical expectations and an elevated standard, which make it extremely challenging to follow up. With KSG, Cudi finds that elusive spark that made his albums from a decade earlier so visceral, evocative, and… alive. The key difference on KSG is that he’s shed his tendencies toward self-consciousness and insecurity, and replaced them with self-motivation and faith – culminating in his symbolic re-birth. Continue reading The Gradually Increasing Significance of Kids See Ghosts

REVIEW: Thundercat continues to invent his own brand of groovy and goofy soul

Thundercat is on a mission to build his own brand of funky neo soul music. On his new album, It Is What It Is, the talented bassist concocts another blend of avante garde jazz with funky bass lines and dopey humor. Thundercat throws the weirdness of an Adult Swim segment into the webs of contemporary jazz compositions to tell goofy love stories that bring his musical comics to life. Continue reading REVIEW: Thundercat continues to invent his own brand of groovy and goofy soul

REVIEW: Childish Gambino’s 3.15.20 is a sprawling example of anti-genre

   Childish Gambino does a little bit of everything on his best album yet: 3.15.20. By drawing clear influence from the likes of Frank Ocean, Prince, Kanye West, Toro y Moi, and Andre 3000, Gambino creates an eclectic and sprawling work that’s been a decade in the making. On 3.15.20, Donald Glover shifts the paradigm of what anti-genre entails in contemporary music – but his newest experiment doesn’t come without a catch. Continue reading REVIEW: Childish Gambino’s 3.15.20 is a sprawling example of anti-genre

In the Era of Unlimited Access to Music, Yasiin Bey’s Negus Exhibit is the Antithesis to Streaming Consumption

Yasiin Bey, formerly known as Mos Def, is re-imagining what it means for fans to experience music. His new album Negus is exclusively available during ticketed listening sessions taking place at the Brooklyn Museum. The listening sessions will run through January 2020, and the album component will not be released on streaming services or hard copy – not any time soon at least. Continue reading In the Era of Unlimited Access to Music, Yasiin Bey’s Negus Exhibit is the Antithesis to Streaming Consumption

REVIEW: Freddie Gibbs & Madlib – Bandana

For all the debates ablaze in the hip hop community, the unanimous appreciation for Freddie Gibbs and Madlib’s music is a true testament to its quality. The duo has released two albums together, Piñata (2014) and Bandana (2019), and are planning on a third installment to complete the trilogy. The rapper-producer team up combines Madlib’s pristine jazz-fusion, soul-sampling production with rapper Freddie Gibbs’s knack for storytelling that is hardcore yet full of streetwise sensibilities. The result is a sort of hip hop purism reminiscent of the early 90’s.  Continue reading REVIEW: Freddie Gibbs & Madlib – Bandana

REVIEW: Danny Brown – uknowhatimsayin¿

At no point during Danny Brown’s critically acclaimed Atrocity Exhibition could he reasonably ask: uknowwhatimsayin? That’s because, frankly, very few people (if any) could relate to the disturbing drug-filled and deranged sex-obsessed trip he shared via his last album. What might be reality for Danny Brown is merely vicarious fantasy for the vast majority of his listeners. Atrocity Exhibition was a cringeworthy wild ride that was simultaneously jarring and thrilling; it was like the musical equivalent of a haunted house. And that’s why people loved it.  Continue reading REVIEW: Danny Brown – uknowhatimsayin¿

ALBUM REVIEW: Chance the Rapper’s The Big Day is full of ecstasy, but lacks in consistency

Chance’s three mixtapes leading up to his debut album were impressive and impressionistic. Acid Rap introduced a trippy free spirited talent and Coloring Book found him refining his sound, and bringing gospel hip hop to the mainstream. With The Big Day, Chance further expands and experiments to make the ultimate musical toast to his newly wedded wife. While The Big Day’s toast finds beauty and bliss in alternative hip hop territories, it gets unpleasantly interrupted too frequently by bland and random moments. Continue reading ALBUM REVIEW: Chance the Rapper’s The Big Day is full of ecstasy, but lacks in consistency

The Artist’s Revolution: The Significance Behind Chance’s ‘The Big Day’ Release

Chance the Rapper’s hugely anticipated debut ‘owbum’, The Big Day, is coming out this Friday. His earlier projects 10 Day, Acid Rap, and Coloring Book were all mixtapes that were available for free online on sites like Soundcloud and DatPiff, technically making them different from official … Continue reading The Artist’s Revolution: The Significance Behind Chance’s ‘The Big Day’ Release

REVIEW: In a year dominated by hip hop, Noname’s Telefone emerges as one of the best

REVIEW Telefone is a profoundly optimistic album filled with organic rhythms and cohesive storytelling. Noname, formerly known as Noname Gypsy, delivers her music through a monotonous but silky smooth voice that is unequivocally confident. On Telefone, She describes her universe with … Continue reading REVIEW: In a year dominated by hip hop, Noname’s Telefone emerges as one of the best

REVIEW: Frank Ocean’s Blonde is a Subdued Search for Reconciliation with his Past

REVIEW After a 4-year hiatus since his debut album, Channel Orange, hip hop crooner Frank Ocean has released his sophomore effort entitled Blonde. The album can be streamed on Apple music right now; meanwhile everyone else will have to buy it on iTunes … Continue reading REVIEW: Frank Ocean’s Blonde is a Subdued Search for Reconciliation with his Past