Welcome to CROOKLAND
Consider this an exclusive look at the newest album by up-and-coming artists Tireek and Lonely Leonard. In Modern Music Analysis first collaboration with an artist, we break down CROOKLAND — an album that tackles the heaviest and, unfortunately, common topics among black America.
Cordae: The Lost Boy Is Found
In staunch opposition to his peers, Cordae skillfully showcases his lyricism and rapping repertoire in his debut album, The Lost Boy. He looks to be the kind of artist that will set himself apart in his generation much like J.Cole and Kendrick Lamar did. Despite having to leave his former label and name sake, YBN, it was absolutely the best choice, as Cordae is lightyears ahead in skill of anyone else affiliated with YBN. From here, we discover who Cordae is and why he is here to stay.
Sonder Son: An Analysis
Brent Faiyaz, a multi-genre blending phenom, has dropped a classic in his first studio album. How many artist can you say that for? Faiyaz blends beautiful melody, harmonies, and vocals with simple (but addicting) beats and production that creates a minimalist’s dream. While singing about his origins, the artist creates an album with no skips — every song is close to a 10 and vital in creating the narrative of the album.
Understanding Kids on Drugs
As mentioned on the vinyl cover of the album, this selection is in no way meant to promote the consumption of alcohol and/or drugs. The concept of this album is the examination of coping mechanisms such as drugs, alcohol, and lust. At the same time, Cole examines larger societal issues including social media, taxes, love, and most the obvious — drugs. From here, we examine these themes in Cole’s penultimate album.
Limbo: A Review
Limbo, was admittedly, my first in-depth introduction to Aminé. We’ve all heard the radio hits like “Caroline”, but this was the first project of his that I’ve indulged in. From here, we review the sophomore album from the Portland native.
The Drake Effect: Midas Touch
They say you know you’ve made it when you can be referred to by one name: Lebron, Serena, MJ, etc. Since about 2010, Drake has joined the conversation (also can be referred to as “Greatest Ever”). The singer-rapper hybrid is now a household name worldwide. Not only has he created success for himself, but he has created success for those around him. Many artist and/or producers have blown up due to what I call “The Drake Effect”. The Drake Effect is essentially collaborating in any way with Drake and reaping benefits of his superstardom. From here, we look at how this effect has taken place over the last decade.
Deep Sea Diving: A Spotlight on Frank Ocean
He doesn’t speak often, but when he does, he tugs at our heart strings. Hailed by some as the “savior of R&B”, Frank Ocean mixes a soothing berceuse with experimental production to create some of the staples of modern R&B music. Who is this recluse and when will we hear more?
Abel Tesfaye: The Legend of “The Weeknd”
The mysticity in which The Weeknd operates shrouds his undying stardom in pop culture. The melancholic persona that he portrays (pictured above) adds to the allure and mystery of one of the biggest stars in the last 10 years. By demystifying this character, we can see just how prominent his rise to stardom has been. From here, we dive into the life of the self-dubbed “King of the Fall”.