Review Summary: Kendrick Lamar seamlessly defies the laws of gravity and understanding for the genre of Hip-Hop, and has now become something of icon at the ripe age of 25. Section.80 should be given credit for his legacy as an artist, with 16 tracks of gold that make fo
Hip-Hop/Rap, now more so than ever is at an all time low, more then just it lyricism but also with its character and its true essence. Now do we, the listener, feed into its demise? Absolutely, and in 2011, we breached into an "Era of Good Feelings" for this genre, and the 5'7, witty, jaw-dropping, Compton emcee is the root of the cause. Kendrick Lamar Duckworth, yes Duckworth, is now on the seen for his non-debatable masterpiece of a LP "Section.80", and no one is safe, not even the late Ronald Reagan.
In 2010, Kendrick released (O)verly (D)edicated, a simple, but wonderful introduction into the wonderful world of "you have no idea what's about to hit you Hip-Hop community". Every track displaying the complex mindset of the young artist, giving the listener many shades of the very scarcely appearing Andre 3000 during his earlier years with Outkast. The turning point for us, and Dr. Dre was the track Ignorance is Bliss, weaving every verse perfectly with each other about the struggle/life of Compton. The state was slowing becoming his to essentially own, and little did we know, the country would soon be his as well. Nine months later, Section.80 was released independently, and the glory that was Kendrick, commenced.
"Gather Around....I'm glad everybody came out tonight...", and sixteen tracks later, we became glad that he, Ab-Soul & Schoolboy Q worked together to create life again. "F**k Your Ethnicity" as well as "Hol' Up" become pinpoint openers, giving a sly, easy opening to the album. Two tracks definitively solidifying the comfort of the listener with soulful melodies blended with cloud-like beats and movement that could only be defined by the one hearing it. A hit from the record, "A.D.H.D" gives us a new meaning to anthems with the easily spoken "8 doobies to the face, f**k that. 12 bottles in the case, f**k that." The 3 minute selection breezes through any expectation one may have thus far and truly sets a standard for this body of work. As the record continues, he, almost effortlessly, raps about everything you could think of, and that's just in the first eight tracks. Discussing the essence of the beauty of a woman in "No Makeup (Her Vice)" or dominating the truly Venus-like beat of Tammy's Song, giving the "Children of Ronald Reagan" and any child for that matter a reason to respect and understand the harm of Crack-Cocaine in the 80's with "Ronald Reagan Era" and giving us the first Hip-Hop ballad of the album "Poe Mans Dreams" slightly showing us the heart of the Kendrick. As the LP continues, doing what numerous artist can't, Lamar finishes stronger than he started. The truest form of heart that the album gives comes from "Keisha's Song (Her Pain)" discussing only what could be defined as a story for the ages about a woman struggling to truly live, what one would call "Gold" in less than three minutes and forty-seven seconds. Lamar turns the emotional world into a shocked world with "Rigamortus" following right after and if one needs proof that lyricism is not dead, just listen to the three minute, ?uestlove sounding type groove with horns that will radiate your ears with pleasure, or wonder for that matter. "Kush & Corinthians" remains to be widely overlooked, and is a real spiritual tester of Lamar, really battling with the matters of opinion and religion, even morals for that matter, with BJ the Chicago Kid soothing the listeners ears with a wonderful outro. Lamar and Ab-Soul summarize the entire album with something beyond what anyone could imagine, more instrumentation then one could guess, and more metaphors and similes then one could ask for in the track "Ab-Soul's Outro". Arguably the best track on the entire LP, it becomes a track that you could endlessly listen to with one of the best saxophone solos you, or John Coltrane may have ever heard. Finally, Kendrick ends this masterpiece with "HiiiPower", and if you don't take heed to his first words, you may be crazy, be sure to put three fingers in the air, you won't regret it.
Need i say more? This is the best LP of 2011, bar none. Lamar solely came out to destroy every aspect of the game, and he did just that. 16 tracks of revitalizing music to Hip-Hop became the metaphorical EpiPen to music, and because of this, the game was definitely a new side to the genre.
1. Ab-Soul's Outro
2. Keisha's Song (Her Pain)
3. Kush & Corinthians (His Pain)
"We may not change the world, but we gon' manipulate it, I hope you participatin'." Nough' Said? HiiiPower, Section.80, Kendrick Lamar Duckworth, go get right, or go get left.