June 30, 2015

Kendrick Lamar - "Alright"

Kendrick Lamar continues his incredible streak with the new video for "Alright," one of many highlights from this year's To Pimp a Butterfly. Although I've listened to the album several dozen times, it continues to thrill and unsettle me. "Alright" appears about halfway through and features part of the heavy monologue that peppers TPAB. Throughout the album, Lamar repeatedly cites "Lucy" while discussing his fame and his experiences with depression. But this isn't simply a spiritual battle, nor should it be an individual one.

Released back in March, Lamar's album remains timely. It also remains a useful tool for thinking through intersectional issues like race and class: a guide for those of us trying to wrap our heads around what's going on across North America, where white supremacy continues to spread violence and ignorance. For more background on To Pimp a Butterfly, check out this essay by Michelle Huxtable, which remains the most thorough review I've read.

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