Blogify: Happy April!

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Despite the lingering cold, this week feels like Providence’s version of the beginning of spring. New season, new songs. We’ve got you covered with our staff’s favorite recent releases!

Image via Albie Brown ’16. 


Kendrick Lamar drops “To Pimp A Butterfly”

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In the spirit of Spring Weekend performers and unintended surprise releases (#FLOCKAGATE?), Kendrick Lamar unexpectedly dropped his new album, To Pimp A Butterfly, today. After the monumental good kid, m.A.A.d. city, an instant classic, Kendrick set the bar for his next album exceedingly high. But, the new album goes above and beyond. Mind-blowingly experimental,  To Pimp A Butterfly is unequivocally a masterpiece.

Crossovers of funk, hip-hop, R&B and jazz permeate the instrumental aspects of the album–which is no surprise, given To Pimp A Butterfly‘s list of collaborators, featured artists, and producers. Flying Lotus, Thundercat, Bilal, Terrace Martin–the list goes on–can all be heard both on their own tracks and as distinctive voices in shaping the album as a whole. The arrangements are unbelievably tight–smooth, dystopian, euphonious, all at once.

While the lyrical power of To Pimp A Butterfly will continue to grow with the listens, even after a day, there’s no questioning that Kendrick’s raps are emotional, intense, dark, and powerful. Juxtaposed with the sometimes-ethereal, sometimes-chaotic, sometimes-both production, Kendrick as an artist and expresser soars to completely new heights.

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Kendrick Lamar drops a new single and we’re digging it

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As much as we’ve loved listening to songs from “good kid, m.A.A.d city,” using our Brown/Kendrick translation guide, and playing “Swimming Pools Mad Libs,”  it’s almost time to add some more Kendrick into our repertoire. Earlier today, Kendrick Lamar released his highly anticipated single “i,” which will be featured on his next LP (release date unannounced).

The single starts off with a man passionately exclaiming “he [Kendrick] is not a rapper, he’s a writer, he’s an author” and “if you read between the lines” of this song, “we’ll learn how to love one another.” The man closes by saying that we cannot accomplish this state of love “without loving yourself first.” At the end of the speech, the song abruptly transitions into a sample of The Isley Brothers’ 1973 hit “That Lady,” (read: that song from the Swiffer commercial). This is Lamar’s first solo single in almost two years, and it’s fair to say it’s a refreshingly new sound for Kendrick. Did we mention that the song is four minutes and twenty seconds long?

Dangeroo Kipawaa, CEO of Lamar’s record label Top Dawg Ent, tweeted:

 

If this song is for all men phes, prepare to start blasting this song on your walk to class, at the gym, or while you’re cranking out that paper so that you can celebrate your nearing Brown 250+ weekend right.

Also #tbt to that time that Kendrick Lamar came to Brown on April 20th, 2013. Remember??

Image via.


Swimming Pools (Drank): A Mad Lib

Swimming Pools Mad Lib

If you’re like me, you’ve spent the last few weeks memorizing the lyrics to all of Kendrick’s songs so you could seem really cool and sing along to them during last weekend’s concert. But now that Spring Weekend is over and the Main Green is no longer a “swimming pool full of liquor,” what can you do with all those catchy lyrics you stuffed into your head?

As always, Blog has the solution: Turn them into a Spring Weekend souvenir by filling out this mad lib and making your own SW’13-themed version of Kendrick’s top hit, “Swimming Pools (Drank)” after the jump. Just be prepared for some weird looks when you start belting out your mad lib the next time you’re jamming to Kendrick, because people might think you were too blackout at the concert to know the real lyrics. Continue Reading


It’s 4/20 tomorrow, but don’t expect a spark on stage

Despite a lead single about “women, weed and weather,” Kendrick Lamar will likely not spark a blunt when the clock strikes high during Saturday’s concert. See, way back when Lamar was Kendrick Duckworth he unintentionally smoked a joint laced with PCP (hence M.A.A.D aka “My Angel’s on Angel Dust”). For anybody who has seen Training Day, you can imagine what a profoundly unpleasant surprise that must have been. Though a point of debate on the kanyetothe forum (check it out if you like forum beef), Kendrick’s weedless lifestyle is a confirmed fact. While many rap artists swear by the chronic, Lamar insists that “it was never a dependent for [him]” and that he no longer bothers with it. So hold your joint high at 4:20 p.m. tomorrow, just don’t be discouraged when Lamar fails to join the festivities. The true letdown, however, is that Dr. Dre’s claim that he “pass the blunt then pass the torch” to K.Dot is really just speech in the rap vernacular and not an account of any actual blunt-torch passing.


good kid, m.A.A.d. city: Brown translation

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It is just true that no matter how much you love The Dirty Projectors, it is always going to be more fun to throw out a Kendrick lyric.

Kendrick’s album good kid, m.A.A.d city is about the difficulties Lamar faced growing up in Compton, California, and his experiences there are not exactly the same as a daily life on College Hill. Having said that, the album is full of lyrics than can be surprisingly applicable to Brown life.

Examples of how you can take being pumped about Kendrick above agreeing-via-Ya-Bish level:

“Money trees is the perfect place for shade and that’s just how I feel.” I am interning/working at (insert investment bank or consulting firm) this summer/after graduation. (“Money Trees“)

“Now this is not a tape recorder saying that he did it/But ever since that day, I was lookin at him different.” I am 90 percent sure that kid spilled a drink on me at a party once, OR, I really feel like that was the kid sat who ON HIS OWN in a Blue Room booth even though he just barely beat us there. (“m.A.A.d. city“) Continue Reading