After speculation of him hanging up the Gambino mantle following 2016’s excellent “Awaken, My Love!”, Donald Glover, somehow finding the time, has released new music (AYYYYY). Evocatively entitled This Is America, both the song and video has already garnered masses of mainstream attention and acclaim — with everyone from Erykah Badou and Janelle Monaé to people I actually follow like Trent Reznor and Tim Michin showing support and astonishment. Worth the hype? Decide below:
It’s worth stating, of course — this is a very visual piece of art from Glover and, while the song is pretty damn good, it’s the video that’s really blowing people away. Meticulously choreographed, this statement on gun culture in the US could not be more accurate, and could not come at a better time. The surreal imagery and shocking moments in this video are few but effective, and the detail throughout makes this a video that you could spend hours dissecting — I don’t have hours, so let’s keep it brief, eh? Plus, Glover can MOVE, mate.
But down to the song. We’ve got an instant contrast between the light, almost heavenly, gospel sections and the grimey, trap sections. I’m personally loving it as, paired with the video, it works well to disorient the listener, then fully merging at the end, before the song drifts off ominously partnered with subtle sirens. The jubliatory chanting and summery acoustic guitars open the track on a fluttery note. Then we hear the first gunshot and that warbling bass and textbook-trap beat kick in, with Gambino’s, if not unique, definitely noticeable delivery and performing style. Similarly to songs like Redbone, we see Glover managing to turn a real message into a catchy hook with “Black man get your money” — just one example of the great, thought-provoking lyrics he brings to the table.
While I wouldn’t say it’s my favourite hip-hop track of the year, it’s a damn good one, and the video is already in the running for the best I’ve seen in 2018.
As of yet, we have no news of a new album, but I wouldn’t put it past ‘im — if he can fit it in between Atlanta and all the other things that make him the absolute best at everything right now.
What do you think of this new track — better than Poopty Scoop? I’m not sure personally; both are crucial artistic statements to be made…
MORE CHILDISH GAM-GOODNESS:
Lots of hugs, kisses and lacerations