CHILDISH GAMBINO - CAMP
DEBUT ALBUM FROM RAPPER / ACTOR DONALD "I LOVE MIGOS" GLOVER. Preceded by 2010’s Culdesac mixtape and 2011’s EP, Camp is the first offical full-length release by Glover’s hip-hop project Childish Gambino. Joined by longtime studio collaborator Ludwig Göransson (in-house composer for Glover’s sitcom Community), Glover delivers a debut that is slightly ahead of the curve yet completely of-its-time. Taking in standard canonical influences like Eminem (“Outside”) and Kanye West alongside more contemporary artists, Glover’s songs are relentlessly reflective, with verses addressing his own race and sexuality punctuated by cheeky punchlines (“I’ve seen it all like I’m John Mayer’s penis hole”) to let you know he’s not taking himself too seriously. “Bonfire” sounds directly influenced by Weezy’s “A Milli”, and Glover’s aggressive rap voice is a little too similar to Tyler The Creator’s, but he’s actually not a bad singer: check him flexing on the mellow ballad “Letter Home” (eerily, his singing voice reminds us of Frank Ocean). It should be noted that Glover was riding the singer / rapper (+ actor?) wave long before it was de riguer (Drake had only just released his second album at this point). The album comes in a double-gatefold sleeve with digital download included.