Happy new year everybody!
I'd like to forget all the bullshit that happened in 2020, particularly yesterday, and take this new year as a tool to start off fresh and revaluate some of the ideals I've been working with until now, down below are some small announcements and a token of appreciation for everybody who followed me at the bottom:
Firstly, I'd like to start with the least important decision I had to make, that being that I'll no longer be reviewing singles. This was an easy pick for something I'd like to change with my account, as I've been reviewing them less and less over time anyways, I don't think anybody is looking forward to reading single reviews and I've also just grown tired of writing them, lots of people don't review those and when I first joined the website I constantly asked myself why would that be, yet nowadays those reasons have become pretty clear to me, as personally I feel like they have just grown stale to write, as a reader I also find them way less interesting then album reviews and taking into consideration that they are surprisingly harder to come up with than full-length ones too, as my thoughts just flow in a much more steady manner when writing about records, those have just become pointless to me.
Another aspect that I'd like to work on is my consistency, this year I'm trying to listen to way more records from any artist or genre that catches my attention or that are gathering overwhelmingly positive reception, as in 2020 I missed a lot of stuff, I'm still catching up to this day and with that, this year I'm just trying to listen to as much music as possible.
Also, I feel like I've been stuck in my ways lately and for that reason something that will most likely come up sooner or later, specifically on weeks that are bit dry for new releases, are reviews of classic records, I might dish out some thoughts on my favorite album of the artist whose discography I'm currently going through or it might just be something that is not related with what's happening in that week, either way, expect more reviews and expect them to be better and more varied.
Lastly, I have deleted most of my reviews on the website. As far as I've seen not many people do this, yet I've just been wanting to clean up my page for the longest time, as I don't want my profile to be clogged up by pointless reviews and that was certainly the case since I had over 200 reviews up and not even 20% of those were worth reading. I've only been writing reviews seriously for a couple months at most and I haven't even been as nearly as consistent as I'd like to up until this point, therefore most of the reviews that predated that were just really scattered thoughts or short sentences. I'll definitely keep the most recent ones, as I think they're surely worth reading and I've put a sizeable amount of effort into those and I'll make sure to be rewriting a bunch of reviews too, notably the ones that got the most positive feedback since I don't want that to go in vain.
While I'm off-topic as well, I'll take this opportunity to thank all of you for the support over the time I've been on AOTY, I mostly do this just to collect my thoughts and understand myself better as a music listener, catalog some stuff I've listened to and honestly it all boils down to just having fun writing, as well as it being an excellent way of keeping my grammar in check, so surely I would've never expected to meet as many great people as I've had, I'm no massive music nerd, especially not compared to most of you people on the website and I'm definitely not as literate or knowledgeable as some of the top reviewers, so I'm still kind of shocked to this day to be up there with some of my favorite community writers.
When I first stumbled upon the website I started using it solely as a way of checking user scores and take those as recommendations, it was only on one random day after already being a user for a while that I decided to review something, I would have never even thought that anybody would ever find my page, let alone get the support that I've gathered and I'm extremely grateful for that, I can surely say that I've never liked an online community this much before, what we've built here on AOTY is simply incredible, I've been an active user for roughly 7 months and it has been extremely rare to have a negative exchange with anybody. Honestly, my only goal was to get my feelings out there, so it's just perfect to be able to simultaneously discuss music, or whatever comes up, with nice people.
I want to thank all of you for the 400 followers, for any other milestone that I have already hit or have yet to hit, thank you to everyone with whom I've had a positive interaction in the past and most importantly, a special thanks to everyone who likes my reviews. If I mentioned everybody that falls under any of those categories I'd have to mention literally hundreds of people and this prelude is already way too long, so I'll just get onto the actual review of the album.
Thank you to everybody who read this far!
This is the first 2021 album I've heard after the new year kicked in and let me say that it is not too shabby of a start, a slow and steady beggining to the year. R.A.P. Ferreira delivers a concise set of sombre, cryptic and jazzy tracks, even if not taking too many chances.
I'll start off this review by stating that I can't give much context with this record in particular, outside of my encounters with the subgenre itself, as I'm not too well-versed with this artist specifically, all I knew before I got into this was that it would an abstract hip hop album and that his latest LP "Purple Moonlight Pages", which released last year, was one of the most critically acclaimed hip hop albums of 2020, which I haven't gotten to yet, sadly.
My predefined expectations for "Bob's Son" were met, in terms of quality and also with the overall sound of the LP, as it sounds pretty similar to what I'd imagine something that's tagged with "abstract hip hop" and "jazz rap" on the website would sound like, my point being that it doesn't defy many rules and lands itself as a rather cautious take on the subgenre. Even if the aesthetics laid down by the record weren't anything to write home about, I find R.A.P. Ferreira himself to be a quite compelling lyricist, even if on a surface level he might sound similar to other abstract hip hop creators I was presented to last year by using the website, however, if you find yourself able to scratch the surface there's definitely a lot of content to be consumed within the LP, as the MC delivers an incredible vast skill set - ranging from, and this is the most certain, his impressively extensive vocabulary, unpredictable flow patterns, really strange pockets he manages to find in these jazzy instrumentals and being able to transform deliveries that are on the verge of being considered as spoken word into captivating verses that are enjoyable to listen to.
So, yet again, I find myself having contradictory opinions on this one, take it for granted that I found the record to be an extremely pleasant listen, however, there's this side of me that thinks that this is just a generic abstract hip hop project and there's another side of me that thinks that R.A.P. Ferreira is quietly taking that abstract aspect and turning it up to the maximum, to the point we are bestowed with this heterogeneous, unfocused and intellectual set of songs, which admittedly impress in many aspects.
I also have to give the credit where the credit is due, the production here quite carries the record on its back, especially when R.A.P. Ferreira is taking his unorthodox approach to astronomical levels and leaves me with very little to grab onto vocally, I can always rely on the production to keep me entertained. When he's being a lot more conventional and displaying a calm, light-hearted rapping style, the jazzy and bright instrumental choices bring something that's not much more than some good obscure underground hip hop, as no matter the type of track we're getting, R.A.P. Ferreira consistently arranges scattered and abstract song structures, lacking a lot in the chorus department as well.
All in all, a welcome start to 2021 musically. Abstract hip hop is a little oversaturated from what I've heard, to the point that not many artists stand out from each other, it's just that they are all super underground, so it's not easy to get a hold of them. "Bob's Son" in particular is extremely one-note but its minimal tracklisting and runtime keep the record really consistent.
Favorite tracks: the cougher bomber's return, redguard snipers and high rise in newark.
Least favorite tracks: diogenes on the auction block.