First Listen: Denzel Curry, MMESYF
Over the last couple of years, for me, the name Denzel Curry has always buzzed around the topic of hip hop and flown under the radar as a somewhat independent artist that has made noise when it comes to dropping some amazing music. But, I have to admit even though his name and music have lingered in my curiosity bubble, I never really took the time to give Curry a true listen and determine for myself if the hype is truly warranted.
Just recently in my Twitter feed, I came across at least a dozen tweets about his most recent album Melt My Eyez, See Your Future, his fifth studio album. Without going back and listening to his prior work, I decided to jump right into this album, to get a true, unbiased, raw review.
1. Melt Session #1
The intro is very interesting, it gives me Kendrick Lamar, Section 80 vibes, which is a good thing. In this track Curry seems to have a self-reflection moment within himself and admits his faults over the years, a sort of ego and self-destruction. It’s a great track and the drums and vocals in the background add even more flavor to it.
I love how Curry took the classic hip hop approach on the first half of the track, and then switches his flow to a more “current” rapping style and even allows the beat to go from a boom-bap type sound to a southern trap type beat. Great beat produced by Karl Banx
3. Worst Come To Worst
This song is a good concept, but it wasn’t very intriguing. I don’t know if it’s because I’m not too familiar with Curry, but this track was boring and not lyrically interesting at all. It was filled with Curry spilling the truth about the current world we live in, but it honestly felt like Curry was giving out info that he himself just found out about the world, not delivering anything new or noteworthy.
4. John Wayne
The beat is amazing. Credit goes to JPegMafia on this one. The instrumental is full of numerous sounds and keeps me interested. Curry starts the track with hook/anthem-type lyrics referencing himself to John Wayne and how he has to keep a gun on his hip nowadays. After 4 being tracks in, I see Curry likes to take specific concepts and run with them through the entire song.
5. The Last
I can’t lie, I’m not really a fan of the rushed, and basic lyrics on the hook of this track. It lacked the creativity to me. Nonetheless, Curry’s flow and lyrics in his verses are absolutely lethal. It seems Curry is not as strong when it comes to producing creative and catchy hooks in his songs as he is with spitting amazing versatile bars. Decent track but not for me. The end of the track with the playing instrumental was beautiful though and fit perfectly to go into the next track.
Now, this is great. This track incorporates gorgeous vocals and calming and insightful lyrics. Ironically after complaining about how Curry lacks creativity when it comes to hooks, he drafts Bridget Perez, who sets the tone for the track. Great song.
I was immediately excited to see T-Pain was called on to lend a hand on this fire Kenny Beats produced track. T- Pain absolutely murders his feature and Curry does his due diligence and gives the song more energy to support the up-tempo track. Very nice. Possibly my favorite track on the album.
8. Ain’t No Way
The 6lack intro was absolutely graceful but the intruding Curry “ain’t no way” really threw me off. The song was riding perfectly before that 😂. The highlight for me is the J.I.D. feature, even though it was very short, it was dope.
I may be biased to today’s climate of music, but this track is a banger! Drtwrk kill the production and Curry taps into a Gunna-like flow when he delivers the hook. I say that with respect to both artist, this track is solid.
A highlight for me is the Jay-Z and XXXTentacion bar Curry decided to deliver in this track. Curry states in his verse that his two decisions in life are to either live like Jay (Jay-Z) or die like Jah (xxxtentacion) referencing his kid life being cut short like the late rap artists’. Very deep track.
11. The Smell of Death
Great background vocals that shadow the track, but this was nothing special and definitely could’ve been titled as an interlude.
This is the type of energy I love from Curry as of right now. This track reminds me of a Travis Scott selection and Cardo Got Wings went absolutely nuts on the production. Very dope.
Definitely another track that is reminiscent of Kendrick Lamar’s Section 80 project. The hard drums, elegant background vocals, and lyrical subject matter definitely mimic Lamar’s album, in a good way. Curry adds his own uniqueness to it and obviously makes it work.
14. The Ills
This track matches the concept and energy of the intro track, Curry reflecting on himself and closing out the album with a chill somber track. I like it.
Overall, for my first listen of Denzel Curry, this album is definitely a good welcoming package. From his versatile lyric combinations to his sequencing and overall beat selection, you can tell Curry has put the time in to master his craft and retain the art aspect of music nowadays. I respect it and hopefully when I go back and listen to his older projects they don’t disappoint.
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