Kendrick Lamar - Section 80
- Artist: Kendrick Lamar
- Album: Section 80
- Label: Top Dawg Entertainment
- Year of Release: 2011
- ME Rating:
- Reviewed by: carlita on 2012-08-23
In prepping to attend the Rock The Bells festival in two days, if someone were to ask which artist I am most excited to see in the newer group of rappers on the bill, the answer without a doubt is Kendrick Lamar. Hearing his name in several hip-hop circles for years and talking briefly with ZZ Ward earlier this year about his appearance on her debut album, my curiosity about him kept building. Hailing from Compton (um, you might know where that is now), the comparisons to other Left coast outsider, alternative quadrant legends, like Bone Thugs-N-Harmony, The Pharcyde and Souls of Mischief, are immediate. He reps Cali like the others who came before but in a more substantive way than those operating in the underground West Coast space right now.
Throwing on 2011's Section 80 today, was the best decision I made all day. Poking fun at excessive liberal political correctness, Kendrick begins the album with a strong socio-politically charged "F*ck Your Ethnicity", implying we are one race so get off your chai-drinking, black glasses wearing, cumbaya high (he does address weed later on "Kush & Corinthians" and "Blow My High" (Members Only) horse and get over yourself. There are bigger issues in the world like an over-medicating, numb reality on "A.D.H.D". The generational tagline writes itself: Got a prob?; throw pills at it.
Dabbling in the pop/rap world to which B.O.B. is familiar, on "No Make-Up (Her Vice)" and "Ronald Reagan Era", his content is just cleverly dope. The album sits the listener next to Lamar, on the stoop or on the street corner in South Central LA, living a day in the life on "Poe Man Dreams (His Vice)" with GLC, dropping knowledge like Redman, telling the youth it's "time for some aksion". If two people are screaming for an epic collabo, it's Kendrick and Frank Ocean. Their loner, similar sensibilities when describing "Pyramids" and "Hol' Up" types, align well together ( hark! it was announced this week they will). The Ab-Souls Outro reminds of a poetry slam performance and Eric B and Rakim's "Don't Sweat The Technique". As Kendrick says "people say I speak for Generation Y. Why lie? I do". Yes sir, he spits "the spiteful chant" eloquently so.
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