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Album Review: uknowhatimsayin¿ by Danny Brown

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Danny Brown is a rapper and songwriter who is originally from Detroit, Michigan. uknowhatimsayin¿ marks his fifth studio album. After three years from one of his most critically acclaimed albums, Atrocity Exhibition, and being silent for a few years, he has finally come out with his fifth studio record.

The album opens up with Change Up. There is a washed-out, reverbed guitar, something you would hear off of an alternative or psych-rock record. Danny Brown starts off the track by having him saying that people thought he was gone, or done with rapping. However, he's back in the hip-hop sphere and is ready to show people what he has now. Danny Brown definitely has a more somber tone on this track compared to what he usually shows on some other records.

Theme Song starts off with a looped string instrument. For this track, Danny Brown says that this is the theme song for people who basically aren't at the top of their game. They are followers and would be the back-ups. Despite the fun and sweet backdrop, it seems like he's being lazy and he keeps the same flow for the duration of the track.

Dirty Laundry is one of my favorites off the album, especially since it reminds me of something MF Doom would produce. Besides having an MF Doom vibe, there are production credits for Q-Tip of A Tribe Called Quest. There's nothing too much to say about this track, other than he's talking about his sexual adventures. Not going into depth, but check out his lyricism and description if you would like.

3 Tearz was a track I was really looking forward to since it was produced by JPEGMAFIA, and it featured Run The Jewels. This was released as a single before the album was released, but I took my chances and waited to listen to the track until the album dropped. Danny Brown also gives his signature, "Check" towards the beginning of the track. Also mentioning MF Doom again, El-P mentions one of his albums, Mm... Food. The person that stands out on this track is Killer Mike with his delivery.

Next, we have Belly of The Beast. This track has an eerie-vibe going on throughout the track with the long drawn out noises. I really like the Obongjayar feature, but not too stoked with Danny Brown. He has some clever lines, but I'm just not entertained with this track. It might have to be with the instrumental of the track, but it just doesn't serve a purpose in my opinion.

Finally, with Savage Nomad, it brings us back to Danny Brown doing what he does best. Giving us a high-energy track where he's spitting some decent bars. The instrumental of the track focuses on a repeated guitar riff.

Best Life samples a Tommy McGee song, To Make You Happy. The track opens up with the orchestral strings along with someone singing, "La, la, la." While being a more, happy and light track, Danny Brown is still able to bring his harder delivery on the track.

The title track brings us back with a more relaxed Danny Brown. As I said earlier, I think this relaxed version can come off as lazy and uninteresting. Most people know Danny Brown as this exotic, industrial type rapper, so to see him on a track like this, it just doesn't make much sense. Definitely not one of my favorites, but I can definitely see some of his more passionate fans liking this track.

Negro Spiritual brings us another collaboration between Danny Brown and JPEGMAFIA. This track is also produced by Flying Lotus, who actually released a new album earlier this year. This is definitely a Flying Lotus-like track since it has a jazz aesthetic to it. I wish JPEGMAFIA had a larger part to the track since he doesn't really contribute much, except for the chorus of the track.

Next, we have Shine which features Blood Orange who also dropped a project earlier this year. It has a late-night feeling to it, but Blood Orange delivers his line perfectly on the chorus. Also, Danny Brown's flow is kind of the same throughout the track, but the beat is great so I think it makes up for it.

The last track of the album is Combat which as another MF Doom feel to it. Q-Tip helped produce this track for Danny Brown. The track features some snippets from a documentary called 80 Blocks From Tiffany's, which has to do with gangs in New York in the 1970s.

Danny Brown has definitely taken a change of directions for this album. While I know musicians change over time, this might be an end to his energetic and exotic-like rapping.
Overall Rating: 6/10
Favorite Tracks: Dirty Laundry, 3 Tearz, Shine

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