For Fans Of
Childish Gambino is better known to most as Donald Glover, who is even better known as the character Troy from the NBC sitcom ‘Community.’ As well as being a talented actor and writer (Glover wrote for ’30 Rock’ before joining ‘Community’), the Writers Guild of America award winner raps as a hobby.
Thanks to a range of free releases via the internet the hobby is becoming something much more, as Glover’s rap profile grew thanks to his reputation as the comedian who raps over indie music.
The time has come for Gambino to release his first record with a price tag after being snapped up by indie label Glassnote Records, the first label to finally catch on to what so many internet born fans are raving about. ‘Camp’ sums up Gambino’s style perfectly, there is no “joke rap” to be found here and on the contrary, Glover is an angry rapper who can at times be deeply personal.
Much like his TV show the pop culture references are abundant, so are the often crude lines about his sex life as well as plenty of profanity. It is all done brilliantly however as Gambino is responsible for some of the smartest lines in hip-hop today. There is still an element of humour, take for example the line “I love pussy, I love bitches, man I should be running PETA” from the fist single, Bonfire, an intense track with a beat and flows that attack with pace from the first moment the haunting opening choir chants begin.
Musically ‘Camp’ is just as brilliant as its lyrics, with Glover moving away from sampling well known indie tracks and using all original production that infuses electronica and gospel elements with hard hitting hip-hop beats. Gambino presents an interesting story that will have you hooked from beginning to end as he kicks off with the struggles of his lower class childhood in opener Outside, all the way through to the struggles of his rap career being taken seriously in Backpackers.
These rants never come across in an “it’s so hard to be rich and famous” way as Glover is obviously grateful for his position in life, but still finds plenty of fuel for the fire with the difficulties in managing his many careers. Considering this is a fairly unique problem to have, it is extremely enjoyable to watch from the sidelines.
Childish Gambino, is without question the most interesting and talented indie rapper around at the moment and ‘Camp’ is an effective way of showing the world what he is capable of.
2. Fire Fly
4. All The Shine
5. Letter Home
9. Hold You Down
11. You See Me
13. That Power