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Blank Face LP

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Album Review

By 2016, anything associated with the Top Dawg Entertainment/Black Hippy crew was considered "highly anticipated" by the hip-hop faithful, but no one in the posse had come close to the crossover success of superstar MC Kendrick Lamar. Team member Schoolboy Q was the crown prince, although his mix of gangsta rap and left-field production had failed to make him a household name, something The Blank Face LP holds dear. This sprawling, cumbersome, and often psychedelic effort feels like a glorious clearing house for the diverse and deep rapper, offering giant, cinematic, and challenging efforts like the Anderson Paak-featuring title track and the opening epic, "Torch," then shifting gear and getting flippant with oddball throwaways like the ultra-nasty "Studio" sequel called "Overtime." "Overtime" at least goes off-the-charts, sounding as if R&B porno artist Blowfly was mimicking R. Kelly's or guest vocalist Miguel's sexy styles, and while the beat Tyler, the Creator crafts for "Big Body" could be his silliest to date, Tha Dogg Pound still act if it's prime strip club stuff, and it's as fascinating to hear as it is odd. If "By Any Means" sounds like an important anthem for a year when race relations are at a new low, it begins "You can f**k my b*tch/You can have my ho" and goes more gutter from there, and while that makes it arguably disposable compared to the proud anthem "Ride Out" or the wonderful rumination called "Kno You Wrong," this 17-track, almost-mixtape is no slog on first listen. Fully-formed stunners like the Jadakiss feature "Groovy Tony/Eddie Kane" and "Tookie Knows II" are cold-blooded classics, and even if return visits require some dropped cuts, there's an awesome, tight album hiding inside this set of tracks, a set where the B-sides sneak in. As a release born firmly in the age of streaming, playlists, and The Life of Pablo, it's a sprawling album to argue about and examine. In Schoolboy Q's discography, it's the experimental LP with an attitude, and a giant Magical Mystery Tour that will dazzle his fans.

Customer Reviews

GROOVY

Schoolboy Q always comes with the heat 🔥🔥🔥

Super excited!!!

TDE has been killing it in this generation! And I don't expect any less from SchoolboyQ!!!

Pretty good

The bass is good but I don't get the lyrics but it's good

Biography

Born: October 26, 1986 in Wiesbaden, Germany

Genre: Hip-Hop/Rap

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Mixing bud smokers' anthems with socially conscious numbers, rapper ScHoolboy Q spent three years in the mixtape underground before launching his career properly in 2011. The first mixtape, the autobiographical Schoolboy Turned Hustla, landed in 2008 and quickly caught the attention of Kendrick Lamar and Top Dawg Entertainment. Lamar would form the Black Hippy collective with ScHoolboy along with Jay Rock and Ab-Soul, and the Top Dawg label would sign the artist. His Gangster & Soul mixtape landed...
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Blank Face LP, ScHoolboy Q
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