BADBADNOTGOOD’s second album is the unimaginatively titled BBNG2, it’s a contemporary fresh take on jazz with elements of inspiration ranging from hip-hop to electro. Achieved with (mainly) just a bass guitar, drum set and a keyboard it’s a much needed revamp on jazz and leaves BADBADNOTGOOD as something of a pioneer of this fresh sound.
As good as their own tracks are like Vices and UWM, (the latter featuring a greatly executed saxophone solo, the former opts for drums) the highlights are interesting takes on rap songs, more specifically Gucci Mane’s Lemonade, Earl Sweatshirt’s EARL and Kanye West’s Flashing Lights. All three possess a massive degree of flare and creativity. Adjustments in tempo and percussion based accompaniment alter the songs entirely and often you forget they’re actually covers. Tyler, The Creator famously revamped Lemonade to create Orange Juice with Earl Sweatshirt and having seen him perform it with BADBADNOTGOOD it sounds a hundred times better with their added help, which you can watch below:
Back to the album, it’s a greatly crafted piece of music that shows great takes on already established songs, murky baselines, pounding exuberant drums and chilling symbols all add to the distinctive BADBADNOTGOOD sound. Their own songs are good but often fall short of reaching the quality of the covers, a reincarnation of James Blake’s CMYK is also an additional treat. Could they have made a creepier album cover though?
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