Thundercat – “Drunk” review

After achieving some newfound recognition a couple years back for contributing to Kendrick Lamar’s 3rd album To Pimp a Butterfly as well as Kamasi Washington’s debut The Epic, former Suicidal Tendencies bassist Thundercat is now delivering his 3rd full-length album. Although I’ve admired the projects he has released in the past (namely his previous album Apocalypse), I was a lot more excited about this one given some of the features on here along with the purely genius 1970’s looking artwork. The opening track “Rabbit Ho” is a proper way to kick things off, as Thundercat sings about being bored & wanting to getting drunk (hence the title of the album) over a gloomy bassline as well as some somber keys. Things then transition right into the next song “Captain Stupido”, where he sings about feeling weird & the production on here is very luscious. The next track “Uh Uh” is a jazz-funk, high-tempo instrumental interlude & for some reason I feel like this would be perfect to hear while playing Mario Kart or something like that. The song “Bus in These Streets” has a joyous instrumental & Thundercat’s singing about technology in a very intriguing way. Especially when he asks the question: “Where would we be if we couldn’t tweet our thoughts?”. The song “A Fan’s Mail (Tron Song II)” is a sequel to the song “Tron Song” off of Apocalypse & while the songwriting is just as repetitive as it was on the predecessor, I’d say the instrumental on this one’s a lot more funky. The next 2 tracks “Lava Lamp” & “Jethro” finds Thundercat about death, but the production on “Jehtro” is much more lively in contrast to the production on “Lava Lamp”‘ being flawlessly dreamy. The track “Day & Night” is another funky instrumental interlude & the background vocals were a nice too. The track “Show You the Way” is said to be about “going to another place” & not only do I love the mellow instrumental on here, but the way Kenny Loggins & Michael McDonald were incorporated onto the song was just perfect! The song “Walk on By” sees Thundercat talking about a very recent breakup over a druggy beat & the guest verse from Kendrick about someone’s cousin is so vivid & fits the concept of the title very very well. The next song “Blackkk” talks walking into the light & the instrumental on here sounds pretty tropical. The next track “Tokyo” is an ode to the city with the same name & the way this song starts off sounds like something I’d hear in an 80’s video game. However, my only issue with this song is that Thundercat’s vocal melody on here sounds very similar to Avril Lavigne’s vocal melody on “Sk8r Boi” for God knows what reason. The song “Jameel’s Space Ride” talks about being free over an uplifting beat & if you couldn’t tell by the title of the next song “Friend Zone”, it talks about being being stuck in the friend zone over a beat that’s perfectly vintage funk. The next track “Them Changes” originally appeared on Thundercat’s The Beyond / Where the Giants Roam EP from 2015 & it’s just as flawless as it was then from the funky ass production to the catchy vocals. The next track “Where I’m Going” relatively ponders what you’re gonna do with life & the production on here fits the give like a glove. The song “Drink Dat” sees Thundercat solely doing the hook & it’s mainly Wiz Khalifa rapping about this party girl over a spacey beat. Honestly, I don’t think Wiz Khalifa wasn’t a bad feature pick for this song at all. The next track “Inferno” is about insanity, but I wish the songwriting wasn’t as repetitive as it is throughout the song’s 4 minute runtime. The next track “I Am Crazy” has some hard hitting drums, but Thundercat’s voice sounds like Frank Ocean’s on here & it’s WAY too short. The next track “3AM” talks about how he can’t sleep because the streets are calling him & I like how the song starts off sounding settle but then starts sounding dramatic as it goes on. The title track has a druggy beat & guess what it’s about? You guessed it: getting drunk. The penultimate track “The Turn Down” has a wavy beat & I absolutely love how Thundercat & Pharrell get conscious on here. The album closes out with “DUI”, which instrumentally starts off similar to the opening track “Rabbit Ho” but then it gets more epic as it goes on. As for the lyrics, he talks about being alive one day & being dead as well as how he won’t even know where this last glass he has will take him. To sum it all up, Thundercat truly outdid himself on here. It’s wavy, its intoxicating (no pun intended) & most importantly, it’s extremely cohesive.

Score: 4.5/5

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