Childish Gambino
Because the Internet


4.5
superb

Review

by Narshh USER (8 Reviews)
December 3rd, 2013 | 169 replies


Release Date: 2013 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Poppin pills at the Coachella

*** it, I just wanna feel something

Understanding Childish Gambino's success up until this point is pretty straightforward. He's a highly relatable artist, in an extremely heart on your sleeve way, whose delivery and presence makes him entertaining and humorous. His lyrics also showcase his seemingly innate sense of culture and trends as well as his intelligent background (I mean, he's kinda my role model in the way he went from NYU to trying rap to 30 Rock to Community to making really good music). But one of the reasons artists like him, Mac Miller, Ab Soul, Schoolboy Q, etc. are all becoming some of my favorites in hip hop is a little abstract - I feel like rap is nearing a really unique point in its short existence, equivalent to what psychedelics did to rock in the 60s and 70s. Sure Chance the Rapper and "Acid Rap" (which is great) are a part of it, but I’m talking about artists like Mac who are instilling increasingly surreal and atmospheric vibes to their production as well as their lyrics. Rapping about ayawaska for ***s sake - but not in a pretentious "whats the meaning of life" type of way - moreso in a really unique and resonating manner. I think raps history being as short as it is, deserves more attention. Think about the fact that we're only NOW seeing how "old" rappers cope with the change in age, culture or music (Jay Z, Nas, Eminem). Or young rappers deal with mind enchaining drug use (not molly, coke, etc but shrooms, acid, DMT). I think its a crucial time in hip hop right now. Rap is basically going through a mid life crisis - and it looks like the counter culture is going to dive with no inhibitions straight into psychedelic hip hop. The last wave of 20 year olds rapping were totting guns and gang signs not doing DMT and ayawaska.

Everything just kept going, and going and going

Enter, “Because the Internet”, Childish Gambino's follow up to his well received major label debut, “Camp”. Although Glover states that one of the problems with the world is that we "see doors" at all, I won't hesitate to say that this album just blew open the doors that Mac Millers fantastic LP “Watching Movies With the Sound Off” and equally engaging and even more eccentric mixtape “Delusional Thomas”, along with Kanye West's “Yeezus” or Danny Brown's “Old” started to edge open. Not to say that this album is a mix of those sounds exactly, but more in regard to the ideology or mindset surrounding the aesthetic. It's the album I've been waiting for.

All she needed wassum

Gambino manages to make an endlessly engaging album by featuring zealous yet subtle production and unique song/album structure - even including a built in play that will add another dimension to the album once the script is released. A major change in themes and focus allow for more eclectic content than ever before. He’s spanning centuries as he visits the future, deals with a world of no gods but more spirituality and struggles with the elusive nature of knowledge, among other existential musings, and he showcases a perfected hold over his vocals, from the surprisingly great Frank Ocean inspired soulful crooning on many tracks, such as the drug laced "Pink Toes" or the groovy “Shadows”, to the effortless syllabic tricks on "The Party" or the relentless energy of "Sweatpants". With only one other rap feature (who doesn't even rap on the track), and minimal features in general, the whole affair rests squarely on Gambino’s shoulders - but he’s so lost in meditation that I doubt he notices. It's an exhausting experience at first , but with repeated listens the eccentricities and nuances (and there're plenty) prove to be more and more rewarding.

We are all cold water. Why try at all? Why bother?

There are flaws in a few verses or stylistic choices (the interludes on "Worldstar" for example), but the albums abundant highlights, a product of realized ambition, prove to be more integral. From the coke laced atmosphere of "Zealots of Stockholm (Free Information)", to the oddly poetic verses on "No Exit" and Earth: The Oldest Computer (The Last Night), there's a desperate and sometimes depressing air always lingering around. A want for more knowledge or enlightenment than available being the likely cause - like when he ponders death on "Flight of the Navigator". There are influences from Kanye West's “The College Dropout” to “Yeezus”, his friend/collaborator Chance, Drake and Frank Ocean to even Death Grips (and probably a bunch of other more obscure indie *** only he knows about in his home as a recluse) - but the point is: this mesh of soul yet cold detachment, happiness yet disillusionment, singing really well and rapping even better (and sequencing the endlessly captivating production even better yet) has resulted in one of the most interesting releases in what is already one of my favorite years of hip hop that I've actively followed.

Breathe in, breathe out, mi amor

There is a story hidden in this album somewhere, under the (sometimes heavy handed) "I don't know who I am anymore" musings. Songs are referenced in other songs, there're roman numerals indicating acts and there's a script to come. So until then, I'll be playing Free Information on repeat and wondering how this is a mix of Channel Orange, Camp and utter beautiful, inexplicable, randomness. How each interlude adds something to the aesthetic (even if it’s just five seconds long), how the outro to “telegraph” is just as good as the one for “New Slaves” and how excited I am to witness the next few years of this genre.

Here are my initial ratings:

1. ‘The Library (Intro)’ - N/A

2. I. ‘The Crawl’ - 9/10

3. II. ‘worldstar’ - 7.5/10

4. ‘Dial Up’ - N/A

5. I. ‘The worst guys’ (Featuring Chance The Rapper) - 8.5/10

6. II. ‘shadows’ 8.5/10

7. III. ‘telegraph’ (“Oakland” by Lloyd) - 9.5/10

8. IV. ‘sweatpants’ - 9.5/10

9. V. ’3005′ - 8.5/10

10. ‘Playing Around Before The Party Starts’ - N/A

11. I. ‘The Party’ - 9.5/10

12. II. ‘no exit’ - 10/10

13. ‘Death By Numbers’ - N/A

14. I. ‘Flight of The Navigator’ - 10/10

15. II. ‘zealots of stockholm’ (free information) - 10/10

16. III. ‘urn’
 - 8/10
17. I. ‘pink toes’ (Featuring Jhene Aiko) - 9.5/10

18. II. ‘earth: The oldest computer (The last night)’ [Featuring Azealia Banks] - 9.5/10

19. III. ‘life: The biggest troll’ (andrew auernheimer) - 9.5/10


9.1/10



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user ratings (1025)
3.5
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Comments:Add a Comment 
Narshh
December 3rd 2013


1193 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

The album will be out December 10th, but it's streaming (after being leaked by Childish Gambino himself)



http://www.underthegunreview.net/2013/12/03/album-stream-childish-gambino-because-the-internet/

RivalSkoomaDealer
December 3rd 2013


1645 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

The interludes in this thing are annoying and pointless. But overall I dig it.

Narshh
December 3rd 2013


1193 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Disagree.



Library is to short to care about



Dial Up's transition into Worst Guys is fantastic



Death by Numbers is dope



people are having too much of a knee jerk reaction to the interludes. the atmosphere this album creates is pretty special

LittleStranger
December 3rd 2013


464 Comments


This should be featured

mryrtmrnfoxxxy
December 3rd 2013


16663 Comments


is it better than camp

Narshh
December 3rd 2013


1193 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Its so much different than camp. This is to Camp what Kid A was to OK Computer. Not saying they're comparable in quality of course. Although this album is really something great.



@LittleStranger Thanks





demigod!
December 3rd 2013


49622 Comments


yea camp was kinda bad

Narshh
December 3rd 2013


1193 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

yeah camp's like a 3.5 but this isn't even in the same wavelength

RivalSkoomaDealer
December 3rd 2013


1645 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I agree with you about the atmosphere but I think the tracks themselves do a good job at that. With

exception to maybe Dial Up, the interludes just feel heavy handed.

demigod!
December 3rd 2013


49622 Comments


sweet will check it out

Narshh
December 3rd 2013


1193 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

@br1nk not trying to make excuse, cause I think the interludes are great on their own, but they might make even more sense with the script or whatever he has planned.

FearThyEvil
December 3rd 2013


18692 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

This probably sucks. I gave Camp a 1.5 so I doubt I can feel anything from Gambino.

Mutantsnowstorm
December 3rd 2013


514 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Link to the album got taken down sadly. Regardless, I'm gonna get this album; I barely like rap, though I have a lot of respect for CG and his music.

Narshh
December 3rd 2013


1193 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Try this. http://www.csnowheaties.com/2013/12/02/childish-gambino-because-the-internet-album-stream/



Gambino himself said that once he leaks something or it leaks somehow, he wants everyone to hear not matter how.

Hyperion1001
Emeritus
December 3rd 2013


26536 Comments


i hate this guy so much

psandy
December 3rd 2013


280 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Great review. Ayawaska should be Ayahuasca though.

Cygnatti
December 3rd 2013


36103 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

(hyperion) [2]

demigod!
December 3rd 2013


49622 Comments


bit harsh

Narshh
December 3rd 2013


1193 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Pretty sure they're spelled both ways and thanks.





EaglesBecomeVultures
December 3rd 2013


5567 Comments


this is probably shit



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