ScHoolboy Q
Blank Face LP


4.0
excellent

Review

by apokolypz USER (25 Reviews)
July 8th, 2016 | 230 replies


Release Date: 2016 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Looks like ScHoolboy studied for the test this time

It’s been a minute since we’ve had any new Q music, which really shouldn’t be a case to exactly get too upset about - it’s only been 2 years since Oxymoron but fans can quickly forget the willingness to practice quality over quantity after being spoiled by so many releases from other artists dropping with no warning. There even came a point where Q said he thought about quitting the rap game for good after Oxy, seeing as his daughter is 7 and he rarely gets to enjoy the time of being a father. It’s quite a mature route for ScHoolboy to be going down - the thoughts of sacrificing a career to be someone there for a child in a big bad world such as this. Responsibility is the obvious sentiment that comes to mind. I believe that’s what might have plagued portions of his major label debut album, besides lack of interesting songwriting here and there - the overarching mood wasn’t as exactly the perfect dynamic to ScHoolboy’s charisma/persona. Not enough substance to be taken seriously in the whole album besides the bouncing hit singles - many ideas brushed the wrong way. Known for being able to blend his thug past with the humor of a goof who can be down to earth and laugh at a ‘deez nuts’ joke on the spot. Well it’s apparent that what’s gone on behind the scenes in Q’s ventures consisting of going on 30, black hippy influence, and the schemes of parenthood have all pulled together to make a more balanced release.

Blank Face LP’s album cover I think accurately paints an image of the tone of what’s in store. Mannerisms of hypnosis, mystery, a killer on the loose. A ton of producers and familiar faces on this release featuring Kendrick Lamar, Tyler the Creator, Metro Boomin, Dem Jointz, and Kanye West to name a few. Some impressive features as well - keep an eye out for Vince Staples, Anderson Paak., SZA, and The Dogg Pound. Clearly a lot of extra guests scattered on the LP however it’s not a change from the last record, but everyone actually holds their own on their respective verses and beats. It’s a record that knows what it wants to be and how to do it efficiently with consistent flow switching in the gritty and brooding atmosphere with songs that feature smooth synths, haunting bass that bubbles below the surface, and introspection - then paired with the louder vicious beats that get people jumping. The thing that makes sure the record keeps its head from being overly dark (which it is darker than the last effort) is ScHoolboy’s sense of humor. He’s still the same guy laughing and not taking himself too seriously still, except punchlines and funny bars don’t come across as obnoxious as Oxymoron. If Oxymoron (figuratively speaking) was Q on molly screaming “*** bitches suck this dick” then Blank Face is Q on shrooms chuckling with nihilism. It’s a change of ‘face’ on this conceptual effort while of course not forgetting what makes him popular.

While “THat Part” (Feat. Kanye West) certainly has grown on me a little and I appreciate Mr. West shedding another wack and silly verse, it’s definitely not one of Q’s best singles - of course you’re going to be hearing it everywhere for the meanwhile since it is one of his most popular. There aren’t really that many tracks that take the same route as that one though. Opening “TorcH” reminds me of some of the experimental (per say) production on Oxy’s “Hoover Street.” Kendrick produces the track and it’s a successful blend of gritty gangster noise accompanying influences found on something off of untitled unmastered. One of my favorite aspects to Blank Face is the song structure on a number of the tracks like “TorcH” and the way it transforms from beginning to end - not sticking to the same beat it starts out with. “Big Body” (Feat. The Dogg Pound) with Tyler on production is a weird track considering how much fun it is. Second to last track, “Overtime” (Feat. Miguel and Justine Skye) does a great job at recreating a “Studio” sort of single that I can see getting a lot of attention and/or maybe a video in the future. Most of the success I’m seeing are in the tracks you’d consider more to be deep cuts - ones you wouldn’t picture getting tens of millions of streams - as they definitely show more of the artist. “Tookie Knows II” is a dirty, chunky, livid ending to the album with its chilling piano lead. Q even tries his hand at carrying some melodies in parts - which ends up pretty hit or miss like, “By Any Means” but at least he gave it a shot to further change things. There’s a ton of replay-ability on Blank Face although I find it could have been cut shorter. Not any filler or cringe worthy tracks in my opinion, but ideas tend to repeat themselves in certain situations in the middle of the album. Don’t get me wrong though because it flows nicely, however Blank Face attacks you harder in the first few tracks and a majority of the second half.

He did a damn fine job for his senior album effort if I do say so myself. You’re most likely not going to find anything that blatantly sounds bad or awful in Blank Face, but fans that are used to the super bouncy and party side of Q may find multiple cuts and ideas to at worst be boring. Of course newcomers shouldn’t expect conscious or profound lyrics like Kendrick or Ab-Soul, but Q is doing the Q flow best on this modern west coast/gangsta rap project. This record only leaves Q on a better technical scale than Oxymoron even if it ends up not being as commercially successful as Oxymoron, but he doesn’t need that at this moment. “*** my image, I need to drop, I need to Blank Face.”



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user ratings (488)
3.6
great
other reviews of this album
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"I'll trade the noise for a piece of divine."...

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Comments:Add a Comment 
apokolypz
July 8th 2016


491 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I get this just came out but I listened to it practically all night and already enjoy it much more than Oxymoron and had my thoughts gathered so yeah.



Also this is my first review in about a year so cc I'm all ears. Cheers.

Sinternet
Contributing Reviewer
July 8th 2016


26621 Comments


THat Part was really weird

decent review, i'll jam this tomorrow

TobiasFunke
July 8th 2016


25 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

First couple listens, I like this a whole lot. Song I am surprisingly not a fan of: Ride Out with Vince Staples. Sound is too harsh/industrial for me.



Favorites: Tookie Knows II, Black Thoughts, By Any Means, Neva Change

Futures
July 8th 2016


11127 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

can't wait to jam this

doomjitsu
July 8th 2016


1240 Comments


can we please not release such long rap albums next time

doomjitsu
July 8th 2016


1240 Comments


tha beat on tookie knows ii is sick

guitarded_chuck
July 8th 2016


18070 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

this is sick, had little or no expectations but im diggin it hard

guitarded_chuck
July 8th 2016


18070 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

p good review i wouldnt call this his sophomore effort tho

apokolypz
July 8th 2016


491 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

*sophomore studio album

Futures
July 8th 2016


11127 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

how are setbacks and habits not studio albums?

guitarded_chuck
July 8th 2016


18070 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

ye theyre all studio albums

Futures
July 8th 2016


11127 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

cool you dig this chuck. this is like my most anticipated album of the year

doomjitsu
July 8th 2016


1240 Comments


after new streetlight manifesto of course

guitarded_chuck
July 8th 2016


18070 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

i was huge into h&c when it came out, but i thought oxy was sort of ok so i didnt have a ton of optimism about this, hope for the best plan for the worst sort of thing

LotusFlower
July 8th 2016


12000 Comments


new streetlight this year? i thought they were busy getting sued for a million dollars by Victory.

also if i hated OxyMoron, will this album change my opinion?

StarlessCore
July 8th 2016


7811 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

production on track 1 is insane wow



not convinced on his rapping yet on this one but still listening

doomjitsu
July 8th 2016


1240 Comments


damn yr very hard to please homie ur not convinced with anything, bump your summertime '06 rating don't be a bitch

StarlessCore
July 8th 2016


7811 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

summertime 06 was so flat couldnt get anything from it



this album is dope so far but I think I like the style/beats/songcraft than I do schoolboy



hes just not that good a rapper, but halfway through this is easily his best work

guitarded_chuck
July 8th 2016


18070 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

he groovy af mane

StarlessCore
July 8th 2016


7811 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

enjoying this, but specifically his bar game is just so ehhhhh



my god though, the production is so good, even the hooks are hot



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