From the cover art provided by Dewey Saunders, to the slow guitar riff breaking the surface on “Bird”, Anderon .Paak’s Malibu is a album that paints a vivid environment.
Everything about this record contributes to what’s more akin to a bio dome rather than a concept. Production from cats like Madlib and 9th Wonder give Anderson a solid foundation to build his stories. Stylistically what Anderson .Paak provides on this record is incredibly original, melding R&B and Soul into an entirely unique beast. There’s also noticeable evolution from his previous record Venice. Anderson puts a lot of effort into story telling on this record, and gets a lot more personal than he did in the past. It’s very much an add-on as he doesn’t pull back on any other aspect of his style to dedicate energy to it.
The stand out tracks, in my opinion, are those that have Anderson pulling together various styles. “The Dreamer” does this so well. Soul mixes in with Gospel, then Kweli’s precise verse is layered in with a lot of thought and harmony. “The Season/Carry Me” is also among the brightest moments on the record where Anderson plays 9th’s beat as if it was made after he laid down the vocals. The beat switch and the way .Paak revises his style is basically free desert that comes with the main course of the first half.
After about 5 listens, I haven’t found a track that I feel the need to skip, and no part of the record has lost the freshness it had on first listen. Malibu is definitely a must cop for 2016 and, despite dropping in January, you’ll want to bust it out during the summer as well.
Get the album on iTunes
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