ENTERTAINMENT: Childish Gambino Takes Step Backwards On “Kauai”

(Photo courtesy runthtrap.com)

(Photo courtesy runthetrap.com)

By Ismar Junuzovic – Entertainment Editor

Childish Gambino has released a follow-up project to last year’s hit album with a new, seven-track EP entitled “Kauai.” Gambino began making music in 2010 with some minor releases, including a few that caught the eye of many pure hip-hop fans. However, it was his last release in 2013, “Because the Internet,” that essentially thrust him on the mainstream scene with many hit singles and a concept album that many thought was mesmerizing.

It is safe to say that this new seven-track release does not impress, especially when it comes from someone as talented as Gambino. He discarded all the elements of his previous works that made them so unique. “Kauai” gives a vibe of laziness and a lackluster set of songs that doesn’t provide anything up to the standard previously set by Gambino. The problems do not necessarily revolve around the fact that the track list is very short, rather that all the songs seem forgettable and sound as if he put the entire project together in one day.

The last project he released felt breathtaking for a multitude of reasons. Gambino had ventured into the more industrial side of hip-hop which is becoming much more popular from the likes of artists such as “Death Grips” and even Kanye West’s most recent album.  He has also been praised in the past for how he is able to have social commentary on the current status of music with tracks like “WordStar,” which he released last year.

While listening to this album there isn’t very much offered that even the most passionate Childish Gambino fan will enjoy. The EP only attempts to copy other Southern artists who have attempted this more “Trap-rap” type of sound. Some of the tracks, such as “Sober” or “Retro, may seem enjoyable at first, but even they lose their flare after the first couple of listens. It sounds like Gambino is trying to sing over some type of an outdated synth beat that doesn’t at all suit him. The only small bright spot may actually be a remix of a song that he released last year called “3005” which actually does sound nice.

Overall, this project by Gambino did not provide anything remotely entertaining even to fans who have admired his work for a long time.

Rating: 2 out of 5 stars



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