The Grammy winning bassist known for albums such as Drunk and The Golden Age of Apocalypse, as well as his influential work on To Pimp a Butterfly, has gifted us an album once more. While It Is What It Is is his newest album, it still holds true to the grooving bass lines and classic vocal harmonies Thundercat is known for.
His singles released prior to the final drop of the album such as “Dragonball Durag” have sent me dancing and laughing. See the music video for your own confirmation. Slick bass riffs combined with sexy, and at times hilarious lyrics, Thundercat set himself free on this album. Overall, he shows us his range, from comical love songs, to romantic ballads, to existentialism, and even the flip slide- optimism.
His emotions flow through these tracks like a stream: arpeggiated, complex riffs and lyrics being the force behind it. Above all technique though, Thundercat displays creativity and vitality with the fun and love that resides in this album. I applaud the work of Drunk and the way he goes off with his emotions regarding anger and sadness, but this album seems to turn the loathing around. “As long as I keep breathin’ / I know I’ll be alright” he hails in “Existential Dread”.
While the album weaves reflections of emotional distress, grief, and healing, it still manifests the fun and loving energy of Thundercat- something that resides in us all regardless of what struggles come our way. The feeling and tone of these tracks lie on a wide spectrum ranging from sadness to downright joy, and likewise for compositions, ranging from simple to complex. In this album, it proves there really is no limit for Thundercat, and thankfully for us his transcendence doesn’t seem to be stopping soon.
Stream It Is What It Is on Spotify or Apple Music