The beautiful mind of Saba is beyond interesting, to me. Hailing from the west side of Chicago, the extraordinary rapper/singer’s mind is so brilliant that he skipped two grades in elementary school, started High School at the age of 12, and graduated by 16. From there, he really began to dive into rap music, releasing several different mixtapes and performing at local clubs. Now, his journey has brought him here — a major album that I think has some lofty expectations. But let’s be real, who realistically thinks he won’t live up to them?
Of course “Logout” was going to be bizarre as s**t, it contains two of Chicago’s zaniest.
For majority of “Logout,” you get this high-pitched version of Saba that is actually dropping a bunch of serious bars. Initially, it sounds weird (Especially considering the fact that he’s using this rap approach over a pretty gentle instrumental), but as the song goes on, it upgrades to artistically bizarre.
Chance The Rapper temporarily halts the tracks zaniness by dropping this laidback verse that uses his regular vocals (Thank God). I like how he takes command of the beat with potent bars, clearly showcasing his ability to catch the listeners attention with his appealing delivery.
I love these Chicago weirdos.
4. BROKEN GIRLS
Who doesn’t love a broken girl? Those are the type that doesn’t require much credit card usage.
“Broken Girls” is a quick reminder that Saba and Mick Jenkins are in the same lane.
“Broken Girls” has this sobering sound on the instrumental that encourages Saba’s sentimental side to come out; and not only does it come out in his words, but it also has him doing some impressive harmonizing, too.
I see absolutely nothing wrong with this track. The instrumental is heart-clinching, the self-reflecting that Saba is doing on his verses is numbing, and the way the song flows is pristine. Will it be a major club hit? No, but I do think it can be one of those tracks you turn to when times are hard and you need to clear your mind a bit.
Don’t you just love when rappers go crazy like this on a record? It’s almost like Saba is questioning everything around him, rapping as deranged as it gets. I like the approach, especially if you are one of those listeners that simply need to hear someone vent.
“Busy/Signal” mixes neo-soul with backpack rap effectively. It’s smooth and gentle, but at the same time features an aggressive Saba on the verses. It almost reminds me of Wale’s “Lotus Flower Bomb” track from back in the day, but made by a dude that is capable of going postal.
TheMIND is featured on this track, and he (or they) sound like three BJ The Chicago Kids.
SONG BY SONG BREAKDOWN
1. BUSY/MIND (5/5)
2. BROKEN GIRLS (4.5/5)
3. LIFE (4.8/5)
4. CALLIGRAPHY (5/5)
5. FIGHTER (4.9/5)
6. SMILE (4.7/5)
7. LOGOUT (4.9/5)
8. GREY (4.5/5)
9. PROM / KING (4.5/5)
10. HEAVEN ALL AROUND (4.7/5)
On the real, this whole album could’ve been on my top 5. For the most part, every song has the same feel, making for this ten track project that almost plays like a rap diary.
We all have our unique ways to express ourselves, and for Saba, his way comes in the form of music. I know that sounds simple, but in Saba’s case, I really do see him using music as a therapeutic tool. It seems like every bar he delivers means something dear to him, and it almost feels like he gets this breath of fresh air letting the world know about his complex thoughts. You don’t get this approach from other hip hop acts today, which is a major reason you will be rooting for the Chicago kid to succeed.
Another reason to root for Saba is because he’s simply a great rapper. When you need him to drop some serious bars, he’s more than capable, and when you need him to deliver something melodic/sensual, he is also able to do that too. It’s almost like he’s versatile without really trying.
Saba isn’t a trap rapper or flashy, which is probably why this album won’t get the attention it deserves. But if you ask me, this album is certainly a masterpiece. His artistry shines bright in every faze of it, leaving you in awe with the way he’s able to paint his pictures of heartbreak, love, and his unique upbringing. It’s definitely a pleasure to listen to.
Quincy is the creator of Ratings Game Music. He loves writing about music, taking long walks on beaches, and spaghetti that fights him back.