Artist of the week: YG
YG is an American hip hop recording artist who managed to prove that it is possible to be from Compton and to have success without the help of tutorial figures such as Dr. Dre or Kendrick Lamar. His debut, 2014’s Krazy Life, is a standout narrative that owes nothing in terms of storytelling brilliance from Kendrick’s 2012 breakthrough good kid, m.A.A.d city. Musically it was one of these fabulous communions between an MC and a beatmaker (DJ Mustard) that makes hip-hop so damned fascinating. The album was also packed with hit singles: both “My Nigga” and “Who Do You Love” charted the Billboard and its BET and Grammy nominations turned YG of the most known new West Coast rappers.
His new album, Still Brazy, is undoubtedly one of the most highly anticipated rap releases of the year, though his public fall out with DJ Mustard and the shootings during recording sessions made some fear the worst for his career. Turns out, YG has just given us a tremendously political and abrasive collection of songs that not only puts gangsta rap on the map, but is sophomore effort as one of the best records of the year.
João Pedro da Costa is a web studies scholar and a music fan.