Freddie Gibbs and Madlib's crazy Bandana!!!
Freddie Gibbs and Madlib alias MadGibbs are back again with their sophomore album "Bandana". Their first collaborative album was "Pinata" in 2014 after releasing several EPs since 2011, and it was well acclaimed by the fans, so let's see if "Bandana" can overcome the expectations. The album was released yesterday on June 28th under the labels Madlib Invazion, ESGN Records, Keep Cool Records and RCA Records. With Freddie Gibbs as the rapper and Madlib as the producer of the whole project, the album features Pusha T, Killer Mike, Anderson .Paak, Black Thought and Yasiin Bey.
The album starts off with an introduction called "Obrigado" which contains a nice playing guitar with a man speaking in a Japanese accent introducing Freddie Gibbs and Madlib. Then we have the song "Freestyle S**t" where Gibbs raps about his drug dealing days to his journey of making music. The next track is called "Half Manne Half Cocaine" where the song is divided into two parts. The first part "Half Manne" is where Gibbs raps about deserving success and his life goals. The second part "Half Cocaine" is where he raps about dealing with cocaine and some sex life. The two parts had different instrumentals and Madlib production on this was "Half Genius Half Amazing", and let's not forget Freddie Gibbs rap skills and flow that made the track great too. "Crime Pays" has an enjoyable instrumental thanks to Madlib with a nice sample from Walt Barr's "Free Spirits" which served as the bridge on the song. Freddie Gibbs flow and lyrical bars were not to be denied on this one, and just like in Pinata's "Real", you can see that Gibbs still has a message to his former CTE boss, Young Jeezy. Then we have the song "Massage Seats" followed by "Palmolive" feat. Pusha T and Killer Mike, and this song might be interesting with these dangerous MC's. With Killer Mike on the hook, Freddie Gibbs and Pusha T collaboration on this Madlib track was just amazing. The two rappers went at it, talking about their drug dealing days thanks to former US president Ronald Reagan to Obama greeting them no matter what their past was, and several shots were sent to current US President Donald Trump. Sorry Freddie Kane but I got to give the best verse to Pusha T on this one, but all three rappers delivered great bars so your opinion might be different than mine. The song finishes with a funny skit. Freddie Gibbs did a storytelling on the song "Fake Names" and his bars delivery was unstoppable when Madlib switch the instrumental from hard to a bouncy nice beat.
Halfway through the album and all I can say so far is DAMNN. We have the song "Flat Tummy Tea" and boy that track was fire. Gibbs was spitting fire on the first instrumental, especially on themes about black people should get reparations due to slavery and America being a corporation. Then Madlib toned the beat down with Gibbs still spitting lyrical fury. "Situations" is another good lyrical spitfire track from Gibbs on a hardcore instrumental from Madlib. "Giannis" featuring Anderson .Paak might be my favorite song from the album so far. It was a good storytelling song from Gibbs and Anderson .Paak, and the instrumental from Madlib had me feeling some type of way. "Practice" is a song where Freddie Gibbs raps about the struggle of his relationship with his family due to infidelity. Then we have the followed songs "Cataracts" and "Gat Damn" which are good songs to vibe to. The song "Education" is featuring Yasiin Bey aka Mos Def and Black Thought and if you thought the collaboration between Freddie Kane, Pusha T and Killer Mike was something, this one might just blow you away. All three MCs, Gibbs, Mos Def and Black Thought delivered an intelligence lyrical madness on this song. They were rapping about the struggle of African-Americans in the US. Yasiin Bey's verse was maybe the coldest one and each verse from each rapper actually relates to the title of the song itself, it was an education of life indeed. "Soul Right" is the last song of the album, and what a great song to finish with. This is where Gibbs raps about his struggling days but now he feels blessed to have overcome it all and he just wants to get his soul right.
From what I heard from the hip-hop game in 2019, "Bandana" might be my favorite album so far and it earned its spot to be hip-hop album of the year. With Freddie Gibbs rapping about living his life in Gary, Indiana over the magical beats and instrumentals of Madlib, the dynamic duo delivered a great piece of art with this album. "Bandana" is an album you must buy, if we can still buy albums, well it's an album that every single hip-hop should listen to.