Wednesday, January 18, 2012

"Made the Beat Then Murdered it, Casey Anthony"

"I always wanted to get picked on the cool team
But alone is exactly how I should be"
First of all I want a show of hands if you have heard the name Donald Glover. Maybe you've seen him on Community as Troy Barnes? Or you may know him as a talented writer for 30 Rock? Not ringing a bell yet? What about as a writer for the Daily Show? Stop me if you're not impressed yet because I haven't even gotten to the music yet.

In an attempt to put a neat little bow on the intro paragraph, feel free and check out the five minute feature Forbes magazine did on @donaldglover as one of their 30 disrupters under 30...

Acting, writing and rapping...can anybody think of someone else who has done that? Alright, I'm not going THAT far to compare him to @drake, but between the two I'm learning what type of Hip Hop I value most. I like Hip Hop that is provocative, creative, funny, witty and well thought out. That's why I enjoy rappers like @crookedintriago, @joebudden and Notorious B.I.G. to name a few. Sure they say some messed up, crazy shit at times, but there's meaning behind what they say and their lyrics are consistently a step ahead of what your brain is able to process while listening. Lyrical depth is when you listen to a track ten times and on the 11th you finally understand a line that was previously nonsense.

Why did I just go off on a long tangent about Hip Hop with meaning? Because I'm getting a strong sense that Childish Gambino embodies just about every characteristic I covet in a Hip Hop artist. I'd describe him as a mix between Tyler, The Creator (says f'ed up things like "Or you can fuckin’ kiss my ass, Human Centipede"), Fredro Star of ONYX (delivery on Bonfire reminds me of Fredro on verse 1 of Slam) and a mix of Kanye West/Kid Cudi (has slightly dark, introspective thoughts like "Sometimes I feel like I ain't supposed to be here, Sometimes I wake up, I don't want to be here"). Give a listen to his high powered lead single off of his debut album, Camp and feel free to judge the comparisons...
Childish Gambino - Bonfire

No holds barred is a good way to describe Bonfire, but don't form your opinion without giving my favorite track of his a listen. I say that because there's a chance you listened to Bonfire and heard enough weird vulgar references to get turned off like I did when I first listened to @fucktyler.

Instead of a lyrical rampage, on All the Shine you can expect a full on display of styles, tempos and emotions that make the complicated Childish Gambino great. From the dramatic beat build that leads into a triumphant instrumental, you can feel a palpable energy snowball rolling downhill. Between the witty rhymes ("that's why i come first like my cell phone"), to the justification of saying stupid provocative sh** on the track, to the surprisingly melodic and catchy hook, the track has much to offer. Even better, he shows off a vulnerable side on the last verse as he wonders about his fate in Hip Hop aloud and even questions his existence in a very Cudi manor. I really don't know why I find depressing introspective diatribes so interesting, but I'm thinking that it comes from being amazed with a rapper's ability to switch gears and be two polar opposites all in one track (confident and vulnerable).

As I listen to his album more and more I'm a little angry at myself for being late to the party. Sure his album was released mid-November and is only two months old, but still, not one single listen from ya boy until this week. What's even crazier is the wide range of reviews Camp received by various music outlets. They ranged from really favorable (4 out of 5 cigs from the TSS Crew) to downright awful (Pitchfork...seriously @sexyresults?? a 1.6/10...smmfh #credibilityLoss). I'll side with @The_TSS_TC and the @TSSCrew's infinite wisdom because Donald Glover can do no wrong with anything he does of late and that most definitely INCLUDES music...#DebatablyClassicDebut

Childish Gambino - All the Shine


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