Baby Keem – the melodic blue (Album Review)

“Hold on, let’s get this shit, let’s get this shit
Let’s get this shit, let’s, hmm
Top of the mornin’, top of the mornin’, top of the mornin’
Top of the mornin’, top of the mornin’
Top of the mornin’, top of the mornin’
Hold on, let’s get this shit, let’s get this shit
Let’s get this shit, let’s, hmm (Like what these n****s on, like?)”


Favorite Tracks: trademark usa, scapegoats, range brothers, scars, family ties, durag activity, booman, first order of business, 16


Baby Keem’s debut album, The Melodic Blue has arrived after first teasing the album in August 2020. The Melodic Blue is mostly an all Keem project, which I personally like to hear from an artist’s debut album. There are a few features on the album from some guy named Kendrick Lamar, some megastar Travis Scott, and a real talented up and coming dude named Don Toliver. Keem’s debut follows two years after his breakout release, and ISWT favorite, Die for My Bitch. This created some very high expectations for this debut.

Baby Keem to release new album 'The Melodic Blue' this week


The Melodic Blue

Keem wasted no time setting the tone with “trademark usa” which made for a thrilling intro track. It grabbed my attention in a similar way that “STATS” did on Die For My Bitch. If “trademark usa” doesn’t snatch up your attention immediately, the surprise beat switch will do the trick.

Since I’m talking beat flips and switches, the production on here was special. One thing about Keem and his projects is that he’s going to always have a dope production. He makes sure of it as he usually is involved in the production process as well.

My two favorite cuts “scapegoats” and “range bros”, represent everything I love about Keem. He raps with confidence and honesty as well with this unique swagger NO ONE possess. I enjoyed “range bros” a little too much especially after the most bizarre yet timely and perfect transition hook by Kendrick. Keem and Kendrick still have no misses in my book. At this point I was happy with the project.

We get a lot more melodic singing/rapping from Keem on “issues”, “gorgeous”,  “south africa” and “lost souls”. I wasn’t surprised for the sequence of Keem vocals. He’s an artist that loves to mix it up. I didn’t love these cuts or Keem’s vocals but, they weren’t bad. That beat change up towards the end of “lost souls” is beyond beautiful. Another beautiful moment had to be Keem’s performance on “scars” which felt like it was a bit inspired by Kanye’s 808s & Heartbreaks. I’ll let you all think about the songs “scars” sound similar too.

The two biggest songs will remain “durag activity” and “family ties” with Travis Scott and Kendrick Lamar but, I think there are plenty of songs that may serve as favorites for first time Keem listeners and Keem stans. I know “range bros” will do NUMBERS on TikTok.. The album closing cuts served as yet another final reminder of Keem’s versatility from the smoothness of “first order of business”, to the mosh-pit rap feel of “Vent”, to the concluding more mellow sounding “16”.


The Melodic Blue isn’t Die For My Bitch but hear me out…

I think Keem is way more talented than his peers. Yeah, I said it and here comes my double down. I think he’s ridiculously more creative and he has that edge over his peers as well.  The prince (or maybe King) of pgLang did well for his debut. It may have fell short of repeating the brilliance of his last effort but this album serves as a solid follow up.

From start to finish this album shows how fearless Keem is as an artist. He has no fear in trying new flows, melodies and sounds as well as having no fear in simply being different than most rappers today. Keem also has no fear in just being himself and that’s important for a young act. The Melodic Blue makes for a good ass debut now that the masses have caught wind of who he is and I think this album gets better with time.

 

Grade: B

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