VIDEO REVIEW: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2UhI-vut2G8
I absolutely love it when you can tell an artist is really excited about the music they're making. We've all had our moments where a specific song or album clicks and it's absolute euphoria, or where we're obsessively exploring our favorite subgenres and admiring the incredible legacies of our favorite artists. Throughout SIMBI, you can her Little Simz's very own love of hip hop radiating through every track, and it is absolutely ear candy. Both through the incredible versatility in this record as well through the lyrics themselves, Little Simz makes it clear as day she has been studying her ass off on how to make an amazing hip hop record, and possibly even strives to become one of the all time hip hop greats herself.
In a sense, this is quite a meta album. Little Simz thoroughly contemplates her existence as a Black woman continuing the legacy of being an artist in a genre she loves, with plenty of race, gender, and class analysis to boot that only a highly analytical introvert could cook up. Although she expresses some tensions having to deal with being a Black woman with a massive amount of expectations put upon her, ultimately she is incredibly proud to be a Black woman, proud to be making amazing music, and is incredibly driven to make the best art she possibly can. That incredible creative energy pays off and Little Simz shows us she can absolutely kill it in any style that hip hop you can imagine. Epic orchestral production? Melancholic R&B? Old school UK rap? Jazzy, soulful plunderphonics reminiscent of the early 2000s? You name it and Little Simz can put it together in one of the best rap songs you'll hear all year.
This is a very well executed album. My only complaint is the pacing of the album is a bit unsatisfying to me. The five interludes are overkill, and that coupled with a decent amount of slower songs kind of kills the momentum of the record occasionally. There are definitely moments where I think I may be listening to one of the best hip hop albums of all time, and it very well might be, but I can't honestly say it's flawless. Regardless, Little Simz has definitely locked down her legacy as one of the best rap artists of our generation, and hopefully she will continue to release amazing music to seal her legacy as a giant in the genre.