Questlove REALLY Likes Childish Gambino's "Awaken, My Love!"
The album from Childish Gambino, who is the alter-ego of actor, producer, former writer for 30 Rock and The Daily Show (and whatever else he wants to be in the industry) Donald Glover. It's impressive in its intimacy and quite a departure of anything that has been released by any artist in a number of years. Not since Andre 3000 and Big Boi of OutKast has a "so-called" hip hop artist ventured into the funk sub-genre of R&B music and produced something as unique as Awaken. After reading a few reviews from some music industry trades, there seems to be a bewilderment out there of what Glover has musically concocted. After all this can't be coming from a Hip Hop artist. Once again we find a closed minded industry unable to accept artists moving beyond the limits and expectations forced on them by the need to be defined by what they determined to be "cool." If you were expecting Chance or Kendrick. Sorry you didn't get it this time. There's nothing wrong with moving the culture forward. And in a different direction.
This is not a hip hop album. There are no bars. No clever rhyme diss. Nothing of the sort. What we have here is the ultimate throwback. The music hearkens back to some 70's Sly Stone (as Questlove said), but there is also that funk element that reminds you of the funkiest stuff ever laid down by George Clinton and Bootsy Collins. There are some Roger Troutman, Prince, and Jimi Hendrix sensibilities incorporated within the album as well. This is just some straight up funk and a psychedelic splash with a millennial twist. The lead track from the album, "Redbone," definitely goes into that direction. A direction you want to take. By the way WOULD LOVE to hear that one on the radio.
Dude I'm so fucked up right now. I can't even form the proper hyperbolic sentence to explain to D'angleo why I woke him up at 4am to listen to this. I'm like---when is the last time someone sucker punched me on this level.....I mean I knew #AroundTheWorldInADay was coming & it was a left turn---I'm about to blow the wigs off music historians... but I thought I was getting some fresh millennial 2016 hip hop shit and I got sucker punched. The last sucker punch in black music I remember in which NOONE had a clue what was coming was Sly's #TheresARiotGoinOn---read my IG about it (the flag)---I'm writing in real time cause ---Jesus Christ the co-author of #WearwolfBarmitzvah just SONNED the shit outta me. In the best way possible. I was NOT expecting a trip to Detroit circa 1972 at United Sound Studios. I haven't written or been stunned by an album I wasn't expecting since that time I got an advance of #BackToBlack. The music is so lush man, I can see the kaleidoscope color mesh of the #Westbound logo. Dude I can't curb my enthusiasm. All I know is if #P4k try to play him again with these ratings there WILL be a riot goin on.
Awaken, My Love and some Bootsy Collins, just for good measure.