The BROCKHAMPTON boys are looking for a way forward. After releasing four albums in rapid succession and forcing their best rapper, Ameer Wang, when he was accused of sexual misconduct, the band was severely burned and disturbed. So they took a six-month break for both regrouping and distribution. The abstract released a $ 15 million solo recording and a $ 15 million RCA took them out of their North Hollywood home and scattered them around Los Angeles; now they meet at a central home studio called Creative House to record. The album that came from all this is a cataclysm, is GINGER a compelling but disconnected record of freedom regarding self-fulfillment. Even BROCKHAMPTON's best songs can feel cluttered, but many of these songs, although each of them are endowed with their own little moments, are unorganized or ineffective.
GINGER is kind of weird, born of the growing relationship between BROCKHAMPTON members and actor / performer / newly hatched rapper Shia LaBeouf, who now runs a weekly group therapy session at Abstract Place. As the Abstract says, LaBeouf becomes something of a guiding light. "We want to make a summer album," said Abstract in April at GQ in June, a mood that has been confirmed by his bandmates in recent days. He said: "I feel fine. Not too sad and like, "Oh, our life is nasty," more like "Just enjoy what's in front of you."
It's not clear if it was a troll or a misunderstanding, but GINGER is not a summer album that feels good. There is little in this record that suggests you enjoy anything. The mood can be reduced to Job's perverse verse on the opening "No Halo": "I overcame it again / I was told, I wonder who I am / I think", I am better than him / At times like these , I just have to believe that this is all part of the plan / I lost part of me, but I'm still here. "Being here ̵
This cheerfulness is not a problem in itself, but writing is flooded with a narrow perspective. At its core, BROCKHAMPTON is a group of discrepancies explaining all the different ways they don't fit. This is at least part of the appeal: they speak of many brands of loneliness. But they will benefit greatly from it instead of understanding what they have in common. This unwillingness to find some resemblance to the comfort of the relationship they have made, to reunite as a strange group, feels like a huge source of their dysfunction as a unit. They are constantly trying to piece together a broken personal story against the backdrop of great success, such as decorated detectives obsessing over an insoluble cold case.
Romil, Jabari, and the rest of BROCKHAMPTON's production team keep the crew littered with strange and bending ears, this displacement, separation, or branching sufficient to accommodate the myriad styles of performance. In the early stages of Ginger things all snapped into place: the haymaker trilogy at the outset – No Halo, Sugar, and Boy Chao – the crew seemed to have unlocked its full potential. Shaking the camera with British rapper badtay is also a nice touch. But as the album progresses, things go awry and the songs break apart.
When it comes to the creative process of BROCKHAMPTON, the group has always had too many cooks in the service of eclecticism. But there are times of GINGER where it seems that every artist on a song has their own song in mind. The title track is a broken array of vocal performances that almost turns into a grid. In "I Was Born Again," a seamless parade of verses, the writing is overcrowded and confused. Kevin was their star, his gravity pulling everyone around him. Even in the worst of the Saturation trilogy, there was a sense of alignment, if not continuity.
Almost everyone gives an excellent performance that is striking at one point or another and many members seem to have the sense that they are growing up ("My attention to detail is on a scale with classic impressionists," Dom McLinnon cheats on "If You Pray Right" ). They just split, at least musically. There is little here that suggests holism. They like to call themselves a boy group, but at least the boy groups are in sync.