RECORD REVIEW: Big K.R.I.T.
A Southern gentleman breaks hip-hop tropes with ‘Trifecta’
Since proving himself a Southern hip-hop innovator with 2012’s Live from the Underground, Mississippi-bred rapper and producer Big K.R.I.T. has always kept one foot planted firmly in popular trends, and the other pointed toward the future. With his latest EP, Trifecta, K.R.I.T. embraces the tropes of the Dirty South with his pep rally chant in “4 Tha Three,” offering: “This for the three, this for the house/This for the crib, this for the South/This for the porch, this for the Sip'/This for them summers, this for the country/This for the coast, this for them buses/This for them players doing the most.” But the articulate phrasing and uplifting summer vibe would sound just plain odd coming from any number of the trap-minded mumble rappers who dominated Southern hip-hop in 2018. “Oh Oh,” celebrates the trials and tribulations of maintaining friendship and providing moral support for an ex-lover. And the chorus of “I need your energy” in the closing number, “Energy,” builds the framework for a song and a voice of hip-hop that’s too savvy to cater to clichés. K.R.I.T. is an artist’s artist who possesses a remarkable skill for perceiving musical trends, and knowing how to bend his voice in such a way that it serves a larger audience without stepping on his own high standards. He’s a Southern gentleman who’s found success and staying power in a world where dime-a-dozen trap rappers come and go overnight. ★★★☆☆
★★★★★ This album will change your life | ★★★★☆ A truly great album | ★★★☆☆ A solid effort, worth a listen | ★★☆☆☆ No thanks | ★☆☆☆☆ Don't bother