Lil B - Afrikantis Music Album Reviews

Lil B - Afrikantis Music Album Reviews
This is Lil B’s most head-turning proposition in years: an avant-garde electro-jazz album seemingly recorded with the cheapest MIDI presets on the market. 

Perhaps you’ve lost track of Lil B. For over a decade, the Berkeley entity born Brandon McCartney held a vise grip on the internet’s attention, whether he was being crowned as hip-hop’s future or its death. Even his nonbelievers had to admit that there simply was no one else like him, and the passage of time has further vindicated his vision. Lil B’s fingerprints are everywhere today: Whether you follow Drain Gang’s transcendentally positive mantras, RXK Nephew’s never-ending stream of biblical conspiracy theories, or Certified Trapper’s self-produced DIY cartoon rap, all roads lead back to the Based God.  

As his offspring have seized the spotlight, Lil B has stepped into the role of godfather. He’s still released at least 15 mixtapes over the last five years (a relatively slow period for him), but for the first time since he initially unleashed his absurd self-empowerment treatises onto the rap world, it’s felt as if the sun might finally be setting on the Lil B empire. The Based economy runs on attention, and while fellow prodigal memelord Viper has continued to grab stray eyeballs with heady retrospective compilations and bizarre takes on astral drum’n’bass, Lil B’s recent tapes have offered little in the way of surprises. Afrikantis, however, is Lil B’s most head-turning proposition in years: an avant-garde electro-jazz album seemingly recorded with the cheapest MIDI presets on the market. Where his earlier “classical music” releases Choices & Flowers and Tears 4 God wafted about in a lo-fi, ambient drift, Afrikantis is even less tethered to basic concepts of melody and harmony, as Lil B’s scatterbrained digital jams spill out into Casio chaos.

In spite of its putative classification as jazz, the closest comparison point for Afrikantis lies in the chintzy, orchestral vaporwave purveyed by James Ferraro and Orange Milk Records. It’s an odd full-circle moment to see Lil B, an artist who irreversibly reshaped online culture, create a record that mirrors a completely different aspect of the early 2010s internet. Afrikantis’ adventurousness is admirable, even if actually listening to it may give you minor brain damage. Amateurish, dissonant trumpets squawk endlessly over a stampede of hammering GarageBand cymbal crashes on the opening tracks, “My Fathers Drums” and “A Song for Mom.” The latter would be a struggle to get through at half of its eight grueling minutes; the entire album is 72 minutes, which sounds long until you consider that a normal Lil B mixtape runs about two hours.

Afrikantis nevertheless contains flashes of Lil B’s peculiar, restless creativity. “Cricket” is the most dialed-in of the bunch, its panpipe synths leading a new-age groove that cruises into a 16-bit sunset. The pounding bongos that open “Kim” suggest what might happen if the DK Crew got ahold of Frank Zappa’s Jazz From Hell, and “Solano Stroll” rides a strange, slanted guitar riff that wouldn’t make you blink if it popped up on a Foodman record. Even the brutal atonality of “Welcome to Oakland California” feels purposeful: Arriving after a series of similarly Bay Area-themed tracks that toss warped, hip-hop-ish beats into the mix, the song’s noodling percussion unspools into a cacophony of car alarms, shattering glass, and police sirens. The cheapness of the instrumentation imbues the music with a deep uncanniness and dread, like a desperate call for help signaled on a Fisher-Price See N’ Say.

It takes patience to tolerate all the blaring plastic horn samples, and even the album’s most curiously experimental gestures can’t put up a fight against the ocean of hopelessly annoying slop. Yet there is something vaguely aspirational about Lil B’s willingness to throw himself into ideas so far outside the realm of what anybody else in hip-hop is currently doing. Afrikantis reduces his free-flowing, anything-goes philosophy to purely instrumental form; the ratio of bad to good tracks is secondary to the audacity of the project, and the eccentricity of it all leaves a far deeper impression than the music itself. At a time when Lil B’s influence is arguably more relevant than ever (“based” has fully entered the public lexicon, whether or not that public knows where the term originated), Afrikantis serves as proof of his enduring outsider status. The results may be laughable, but no one ever accused Lil B of not being entertaining.
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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.
Lil B - Afrikantis Music Album Reviews Lil B - Afrikantis Music Album Reviews Reviewed by Wanni Arachchige Udara Madusanka Perera on January 19, 2023 Rating: 5


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