Kendrick Lamar didn’t hide the fact that this album was coming out, as several clues and hints were dropping the past couple of weeks. Regardless of the high levels of anticipation the album has gotten, Kendrick’s prophet inspired music never needs it to get hip- hoppers around the world excited.
I can see this being one of the major club hits off this album, but also one of the most influential.
This song has a 90’s feel to it, as the beat has lots of scratches on it combined with the riot-like sounds that NWA used in their past work. Kendrick doesn’t go as hard as I want him to lyrically on this song, but I appreciate his unique approach.
The song switches up 3 minutes in, and it becomes this soothing song that features U2 singing on the chorus. This part of the song is a contradiction of the first part.
You mean to tell me he paid U2 to do only that?
On some real s–t, I have no clue how Kendrick was able to make a song like this… This s–t is so awesome in many different ways!
So where do I start in explaining this song? Is it the UK chipmunk in the background? Is it the beat that has this super dramatic build up? Or is it Kendrick effectively mimicking an old lady in need of some water? Nonetheless, combining everything makes for this dynamic ass song that not many artists can make.
I don’t have many words to describe it, just listen to it.
‘DNA’ is a hell of a record to announce your comeback to right? Kendrick is being such a meanie head on it, as he is discrediting all the softies in the game. S.N. You think Big Sean will come out of his house today?
Aside from the heinous vibe of the track, you will enjoy the fact that the song has a great bop to it overall; Kendrick takes advantage of this bop by giving us perhaps one of his clearest sounding verses to date.
The second part of this song is meaner than the first, and quite honestly, I think that Kendrick Lamar blacked out on it (Like literally fell to the floor, hitting his head on the couch arm while he was rapping.). On this part, Kendrick is taking aim at every critic possible.
This is definitely a tone-setting track.
You don’t usually get some gimmicky records from Kendrick, but this song gives you just that and I love it! Lyrically, he is still kicking ass and taking names, but he’s doing it in a way where I can still nod my head.
I feel like this song was very fun for Kendrick to make, as it gave him a chance to channel this kill-a-rapper sound that I think he enjoys a lot. You can tell that him and his homies were jumping around in the studio while Kendrick was making this song, gassing him up more and more throughout.
I am amazed how a 5’4 rapper can punk so effectively.
‘Element’ is a very dynamic song by Kendrick, as it combines some R&B elements with ‘flashy-rapper’ ones.
Kendrick absolutely nails the melody of the chorus, adding catchy ass lyrics in-between.
We all know Kendrick can rap, so when it gets to the rapping part, it is easy for him to slaughter. Kendrick is being ignorant as hell on it lyrically though, which seems to be the theme of half of this album.
Is this one of Kendrick’s funnest songs since ‘Swimming Pool”?
SONG BY SONG BREAKDOWN
1. BLOOD (N/A)
2. DNA (5/5)
3. YAH (5/5)
4. ELEMENT (5/5)
5. FEEL (4.6/5)
6. LOYALTY (4.5/5)
7. PRIDE (4.3/5)
8. HUMBLE (5/5)
9. LUST (5/5)
10. LOVE (4.8/5)
11. XXX (4.7/5)
12. FEAR (4.6/5)
13. GOD (4.3/5)
14. DUCKWORTH (4.5/5)
OVERALL RATING (9.9/10)
Kendrick is 3/3 guys.
First and foremost, Kendrick’s ability to step outside of the box is unmatched to me. He isn’t afraid to take music to places that others might feel is bizarre, which should always be the main focus of an artist. Also, Kendrick does a good job of sprinkling in dominant lyrics to remind individuals that he is just as lyrical as he is experimental. Kendrick is comfortable in his skin, and it is very apparent when you listen to this album.
Unlike ‘To Pimp a Butterfly’, I think every song on this album was meant to be enjoyed for its overall sound. Kendrick doesn’t sacrifice the quality of the music to make a point, he meshes the two together masterfully instead.
Overall, a good album to me is a collection of good songs, but a great one is a complete body of work; this is a complete body of work and then some! The album has a consistent sound to it, as you are treated to the story of this young rap artist that is fighting demons in the public’s eye. The album is exactly what you wanted from Kendrick, and might be his best to date.
BTW, I said Kendrick’s name a damn lot on this post….