To Pimp A Butterfly is great but about 25 minutes too long. Love the collaborative stuff with Kamasi Washington and Thundercat. Less fussed about the rest of his stuff. Not entirely convinced he’s as important as everyone thinks**. 3/5.
** Willing to concede that I might just be old.
Can’t forget verse this too:
An absolute genius in a dictionary definition sense of the word. His albums (particularly the last two) are as complex and layered as any great works of literature and his ability to be cryptic and universal at the same time is unique IMO.
At the same time as that, he’s just unbelievably gifted technically. His throwaway brag-raps are on a whole different level to any of his peers and I love the way he’s carved out this ability to chuck stuff out to establish how amazing he is without needing to bog down his albums with braggadocio stuff (unless it’s thematically/narratively relevant)
Fairly inarguably the GOAT, in my honest opinion.
(Wish these threads were back on the Social board still)
Easy 5. Pure technique is boring without the passion and feels but he’s got ‘em in spades. Breathed new life into a style that was flagging with gkmc, obliterated genre conventions with tpab and had a deserved victory lap with Damn. Set a bar in the 2010’s that everyone’s gonna struggle with this decade.
Reckon he’s a good egg though I could be wildly wrong.
5/5 if only for the verse on “Control”, imo
Can’t forget how apeshit everyone went over this
I don’t just think that people like TPAB because it’s “important”. The guy had already dropped a classic rap album, in the purist sense. But few people had any idea he had the musical vision to take up the mantle of Kanye-type auteur.
He smashed through that barrier with what is a staggeringly well-produced, well-crafted and ambitious journey through black music, rapped his arse off over a huge variety of beats in a way few if any rappers in history could pull off, and created a powerful and timely narrative along the way.
It’s a fucking monolithic work. I get that the songs aren’t necessarily as catchy or immediate as the ones on GKMC (or the far lesser DAMN), I get that plenty of people find it easier to admire than to love, but for me those qualities give the album a knotty depth, which allows it to unravel over a huge number of listens, and still throw out new surprises today.
I like him a lot. Never quite clicked with Damn, but GKMC and TPAB are both clear 5/5s.
One of the best songs of the century:
Got me into hip-hop. my artist of the decade according to Spotify and my ears. 5/5.
I was about 5 years late to the Kendrick party. I remember asking on here what album I should buy first and someone said they were truly jealous that I would be discovering and listening to his albums for the first time.
Good Kid mAAd City grabbed me instantly - one of my fav albums ever now. Top, top, top story telling, beautiful vibes and rhyme.
To Pimp A Butterfly took a few listens to appreciate fully. But once it clicked buy did it hit hard. The Blacker The Berry is so angry and aggressive I still get pumped listening to it.
DAMN is incredible too - need to listening to it more often.
5 out of 5. The greatest rapper ever.
One of the few artists of this generation who can write a concept album, follow through on it and do it without coming across like a pretentious wazzock
Also enjoyed when he was just chucking tracks out on tele and not releasing them (well until untitled unmastered)
I would assert that Kendrick Lamar is the last true “album” artist in music
5/5 for now until his rock opera comes out and then 2/5
Thought you were on mute m9