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New album by Kendrick Lamar is a hit


     Grammy Award-winning rapper Kendrick Lamar recently released his new album, “Mr. Morale & the Big Steppers”. Given that this is the first project he’s released in over five years, lots of anticipation and criticism has surrounded this album.

     “Mr. Morale & the Big Steppers” is organized in two parts, with two different themes and perspectives. Part one consists of nine tracks, and each song revolves around Lamar’s frustrations with the world and problems he’s experienced. These tracks touch on topics like alcohol abuse, father issues, freedom of speech and toxic relationships. This section is my personal favorite of the two because the songs have more replayability, and the content of the songs remind of Lamar’s older work.

     Section two is composed of tracks 10-18. This part is mostly about Lamar acknowledging his past mistakes, and how he has changed his opinions on certain issues. While this section isn’t as good overall compared to the beginning of the album, there are a few high points that I enjoyed. One song that stood out to me in this section was “Mother I Sober.” The lyrics in this song are very personal and well-written, and it conveys the overall message of love, loss and grief of this part of the album well. 


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     My favorite songs from part one of this album are “N95” and “Father Time.” “N95” is the most replayable of all of the songs on the album because of its production quality and melody. This song reminds me of some of Lamar’s older hits such as “DNA”, and it's an overall very enjoyable listening experience. The lyricism of “Father Time'' is great, and the message revolves around Lamar’s issues with his father growing up and how it has changed him as a person.

     My biggest complaint with this album is that most of the songs have very little replay value. While the first listen through is good, listening to the songs without the context of the rest of the album would make them much less enjoyable. Certain songs on the album, such as “Crown,” are very repetitive and can tend to be boring.

     What this album lacks in replayability, it makes up for in its lyricism and production quality. Each song is very well-mixed and the beats flow well with the lyrics. The topics of systematic racism, abuse and childhood trauma portrayed in this album are very interesting and well-written, making this project more enjoyable.

     Overall this album is very enjoyable the first time through, but it's difficult to listen to casually due to the deep nature and meaning behind each song. While it isn’t Lamar’s best work, it is still worth listening to, and I would recommend it to anyone who is interested In Kendrick Lamar’s music.

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