The wait was worthwhile and it felt like one of hip-hop’s prophets had descended a mountain to deliver scripture when Kendrick Lamar appeared on two tracks from Baby Keem’s “The Melodic Blue” album. His verses were excellent but it felt like it had been far too long since we’d heard his voice.
Fast forward to May 13th, and the prophet finally returned home with Mr Morale and the Big Steppers, the A-list rapper’s fifth studio album.
The wait was really worth it as the album is split into two sections, each featuring nine tracks that serve to highlight Lamar’s ever-evolving worldview.. Commitment is central to Lamar’s discography.
The album frequently features Eckhart Tolle’s voice; the spiritual teacher and author narrates several songs. Whitney Alford, Lamar’s partner, is credited as a narrator on “We Cry Together,” which also includes a Florence and the Machine sample.
A powerful exorcism of his inner demons concludes on a hopeful note Lamar looks for healing in the next generation, featuring the baby voice of his new daughter and his fiancée. At the end of the song, his fiancée says, “You broke a generational curse/ Say “Thank you, dad.” “Thank you, daddy, mother, and brother.”
Pharrell, Duval Timothy, the Alchemist, Beach Noise, Boi-1da, Sounwave, Dahi, FNZ, J.LBS, Bekon, and many more are among the album’s producers.
Mr. Morale and The Big Steppers might be able to explain why any of us are the way we are. It was a genuine contribution to human consciousness.