The reason I have TPAB last is its nonexistent replay value. I literally haven’t touched it since 2015, save for a couple of plays of Blacker the Berry.
I understand it’s subject matter is important and it may be a crucial set of art for the time it came out, but it is an ‘oscar bait’ album (if music can be Oscar bait lol) made more for critics and less for the average music fan to listen to.
Section 80 was a great major debut and like you said ADHD, fuck your ethnicity and other were brilliant. I still find myself coming back to a few of those.
Ronald Reagan era, Poe Man’s dreams are scene setting songs and Keisha’s song is probably in my top 5 Kendrick Songs.
Now I listened to this after GKMC but if I hadn’t then Keisha’s song would be where Kendrick would announce himself as an elite storyteller for me.
DAMN. Is brilliant and like you said has lots of replay value. The new sound he has, the more aggressive beats and almost grime beats he has In some of his songs show he isn’t afraid of mixing things up and adapting to the times. To pull that off is not a mean feat, and boy does he. I had GOD on replay for the whole summer basically. DAMN is second only to 4:44 for my 2017 AOTY.
GKMC is my number 1. As I said earlier, this was my first Kendrick album, and my oh my it is a classic. Now I grew up with old school 90s west coast hip hop, and this album is an eye opener in how the atmosphere has changed there since then. It was an entry to modern day Compton/LA. Kendrick’s storytelling brought that world alive and I loved every second. From his coming of age stories, to the harsh realities of being in that environment (and you could tell how uncomfortable he felt in that environment in songs like the art of peer pressure). If I ever want to take a journey through modern day Compton when you’re just trying to be a regular kid around the gangbangers etc I know this album is the one.
It’s his most cohesive project and gives us a whole story to listen to, with a proper beginning middle and end.
MAAD City, Swimming Pools, Sing about Me, Backstreet Freestyle are song I keep coming back to and this album retains its replay value today.