The Voice of Wakefield High School

The Howler

Kendrick Lamar delivers another provocative album

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When a rapper drops an album, they don’t usually promote it by telling you to get yourself together in preparation. However, that’s exactly what rapper, Kendrick Lamar told his fans in his single “The Heart Part IV” released just three weeks prior to his album. D*MN is Lamar’s fourth studio album and one of his most provocative yet.
While his new album isn’t nearly as sonically ambitious as his previous effort, To Pimp A Butterfly which consisted of a fusion of jazz and rap, it still contains some of the best songwriting and production in his entire discography. The production and beats on this record are much more commercial compared to his previous album, but also comparatively minimal and stripped back.
The lyrical themes of the album are more personal and introspective than Lamar’s previous albums. The album cover indicates this with Lamar’s brooding look on his face. The lyrics speak more about his struggles with depression and conflict of faith with Christianity. The album cover is starkly minimal with a picture of Lamar looking depressed with the album’s title on top in a red, Times New Roman font.
The standout tracks on the record are “DNA,” “XXX,”, and “PRIDE,” “DNA,” is an explosive song that starts off with a sample of a Fox News segment that criticized the rapper’s powerful performance at the 2016 Grammys. The rest of the track explores Lamar’s view and critique on black culture. “XXX” is another dynamic song with three beat changes that has a surprisingly good feature; U2’s Bono. “PRIDE” in comparison is a more slower track that features the production of The Internet’s Steve Lacy, and explores Lamar’s religious beliefs and ideals.
D*MN is yet another great album added to Lamar’s discography. It may not be as ambitious as his previous album, but fans and non-fans of Kendrick Lamar can appreciate this record because it showcases how Lamar is absolutely on top of his game right now.

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The Voice of Wakefield High School
Kendrick Lamar delivers another provocative album