07. Danny Brown - Old
What I loved about Danny Brown’s previous album, XXX, was the album-length arc. It began with the club songs about popping molly and having lots of sex; the songs that Danny Brown and his high-pitched rapping voice are known for. But the second half of the album became increasingly aware that Danny was turning 30 years old, and that this partying shit has to come to an end for his own good. He even started rapping in his “normal” voice. I bring this up because Old also has a ‘Side A/Side B’ mentality. It starts off with some tales of what it was like growing up in Detroit. It’s “the old Danny Brown,” before he gained a following and a larger-than-life personality. It’s coming from the same place as where XXX left off – a place of maturity. But on Side B, the album switches to molly-soaked club bangers. Some people were disappointed that the album reverted to what they perceive as a party music crutch. But listen closer: those club songs, lyrically (and sonically) aren’t anywhere near as fun as the ones on XXX. Danny, our album character anyway, is back in the party scene but he’s not enjoying it. He came back to the club because talking about “the old Danny Brown” was depressing. Even though he knows its not good for him, he starts partying again. And all it is is dangerous. And all it is is a cycle of behavior that he can’t get out of. Get depressed about partying. Get depressed about real life, so back to partying. Old is full of enjoyable songs. But the album-length narrative is so finely realized that I had to spend this whole paragraph talking about it. You’re a fool if you write off Danny Brown as a “molly rapper.” Danny Brown is one of the most ambitious artists in hip-hop.
Originally Posted by Delano
Reaper16's taste in beer, music, and literature are unmatched on this message board.
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