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Pi’erre Bourne - The Life of Pi’erre 5 Music Album Reviews

Pi’erre Bourne - The Life of Pi’erre 5 Music Album Reviews
The fifth installment of the rapper-producer’s long-running series lands closer to the sweet spot between beats and bars glimpsed on his previous effort.

As a rapper-producer, Pi’erre Bourne’s musical frame of reference first blossomed under the glow of FL Studio. His uncle inspired him to make his first beats while in elementary school during the rise of Dipset and G-Unit. After a childhood spent traveling between New York and South Carolina, Bourne moved to Atlanta to study sound engineering before taking a job as an engineer for Epic Records. His time in the studio helped refine his songcraft, but it was his direct exposure to the 2010s Atlanta rap boom—artists like 21 Savage, Lil Yachty, and Young Nudy, among others—that truly galvanized him.

At the time, Bourne’s contrasting style was an anomaly within rap: he pitted cavernous 808s against synth lines that wouldn’t sound out of place in a 16-bit-era Sonic the Hedgehog game. Though indebted to producers like Pharrell and Kanye West, songs like Nudy’s “No Stains” and Playboi Carti’s “Magnolia” hijacked genre conventions with chirpy abandon and helped lay the foundation for a new generation of rap psychedelia ruled by song leaks and heavy vibes. Bourne’s beats quickly became the star of the show as his approach became more ubiquitous, but he’s expressed frustration at having his raps looked over as a part of the experience: “I just want everyone to take me seriously for both,” he told The Fader in 2017. The Life of Pi’erre 5—the fifth installment of his long-running series which also doubles as his sophomore major-label album—lands slightly closer to the sweet spot between beats and bars glimpsed on 2019’s The Life of Pi’erre 4. It’s a slight upgrade, less a gear shift than a recalibration.

There’s no denying Bourne’s strengths manifest as a producer first and a rapper second. He’s never been bashful on the mic, but his beats—synths, drums, and sound effects whirring and clicking together like gears in a clock—tend to smother his breathy sing-song. Continuing the refinement seen on TLOP4, the fifth in the series further corrects this power imbalance; his voice meets the production halfway, becoming more than just another detail in an audio mosaic. He cuts through throbbing 808s and minor octave keyboards on mid-album highlight “40 Clip,” where he flexes checks and leaves his jewelry at home to not embarrass anyone. He’s become better at determining whether to skate over his bubbly sonics (“Biology 101”) or submerge himself within them (“HULU”). His voice generally lands a little bolder than before, which gives the raps more impact.

None of this is to say that his subject matter has changed much. Bourne’s raps are wordplay-heavy, funneling boasts about money and fashion, flirtations with lovers, and the occasional autobiographical gem through the tried-and-true art of the metaphor. He isn’t as silly as Big Sean or unfadeable as Roc Marciano, but his jokes and scene-setting are typically colorful enough to infuse each rhyme with enough personality. He invokes rapper Cassidy’s song “Hotel” while describing an anonymous hookup on the chorus of “Biology 101.” On “Couch,” he laments his deteriorating relationship with a brother who let him crash in his living room before talking about untucking his chain at a train stop that used to scare him. Not every line is a winner—“I wear ice on me like hockey dudes” and “I’m a king like Simba, roar,” in particular, fall flat—but they fit the lighthearted nature of Bourne’s music, which takes itself just the right amount of serious.

Pi’erre 5’s guests and production embellishments do the rest of the heavy lifting. Playboi Carti, who’s already set to appear on the album’s upcoming deluxe edition, bounds across the double-time of “Switching Lanes,” while Sharc—an artist signed to Bourne’s SossHouse record label—pulls off abrupt left turns on “Drunk and Nasty.” These two songs also house some of the album’s most surprising production choices. “Lanes” ends with a sped-up ice cream truck jingle merging with the beat; “Nasty” features an abrupt five-second pause after its hook, designed to keep listeners on their toes. Further, on “Butterfly,” Bourne slides between rapping regularly and rapping a half-measure ahead of the beat, creating a beautiful instability. These quirks could only come from a rapper with a professionally tuned production ear; one willing to compare themselves to Kobe Bryant, a basketball player who also made a point of subverting expectations on the fly.

The Life of Pi’erre 5 exists in a world terraformed to Pi’erre Bourne’s sensibilities. His aesthetic reaches far beyond the leak threads and madcap videos that have turned him into a cult icon. Even though his sound has become more commonplace, Bourne’s consistent tinkering brings him closer to fully reconciling both sides of his art. If Pi’erre 5 proves anything, it’s that Pi’erre Bourne the producer and Pi’erre Bourne the rapper are less at odds than ever.
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About Wanni Arachchige Udara Madusanka Perera

Hey, I'm Perera! I will try to give you technology reviews(mobile,gadgets,smart watch & other technology things), Automobiles, News and entertainment for built up your knowledge.
Pi’erre Bourne - The Life of Pi’erre 5 Music Album Reviews Pi’erre Bourne - The Life of Pi’erre 5 Music Album Reviews Reviewed by Wanni Arachchige Udara Madusanka Perera on Friday, June 18, 2021 Rating: 5

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