SOTBMusic: Revisiting K.R.I.T. Iz Here

Upon its July release, I was a bit unsure of the direction Big K.R.I.T. went on his latest project, K.R.I.T. Iz Here, going as far to say it didn’t touch my soul as much as his previous efforts did.

In my eyes, gone was the hungrier-than-hungry Southern philosopher. In his place, we had an artist who still philosophized, but was a bit happier and more content with his place in the world. It was an evolution, sure. We need our favorites to grow. Otherwise we’ll outgrow them. As I said in my initial review, we don’t want Pusha-T rapping about coke with the same exact beat all the time. We wouldn’t want JPEGMAFIA to justifiably crap on writers with every breath in his body, even though it’s funny. Cardi B is at her strongest when she diversifies her lyrics and doesn’t just do “I’m sexy, I’ve got money, I’ll buss your head” tracks. Even understanding that, I initially still wasn’t in love with the album.

And that’s okay. Sometimes, our favorites make projects we don’t automatically love through and through. It doesn’t mean they automatically suck or we, the listeners, are automatically tone-deaf haters. It just means that, like the listeners, the artists themselves are still human. They can err. The fact that we sometimes hold artists on a pedestal is another topic to be explored later.

Back to the album, three months have passed since its release. Contrary to my initial thoughts, I’ve run it back many times since then. As a bit of a retort to my previous review, I was somewhat wrong about the album. Yes, it’s happier and not as heavy with its soul, sampling, and all the things that made K.R.I.T. stand out. However, the fact that he was able to put out a KOD-esque project and still not completely lose focus (like some other artists not named Cole or Lamar have ::cough::Logic::cough:: done) is impressive in its own right. It’s begun to speak to my soul a bit more as well. An example of this is the track “Prove It” with, funnily enough, J. Cole. This shift in perspective towards the album is simple. While I’m still going through some thangs (shameless plug) myself, I’m in a better place mentally, physically, and spiritually than I was earlier in the year. I’m better equipped to believe in it and its purpose.

I’m celebrating closing in on the release of my third project of the year–Baltimore Commercial Break 2–which doubles as the best project I’ve ever worked on. Mentally, I’m stronger and happier. Physically, I’ve put on a few pounds, but I still feel healthy. Spiritually, I’ve become more connected with a higher power than I was earlier in 2019, due to my finding and accepting peace. I feel as if I can celebrate with K.R.I.T. now just as much as I could run with his teachings and preachings earlier in his career.

I say this as I’m gearing up to go to the K.R.I.T. concert next week, which is the perfect culmination for me to this album. It’s grown on me a lot since its release three-plus months ago. It’s still not the perfect album. It’s still not 4eva Is A Mighty Long Time. Truth be told, it shouldn’t be. People change and grow. K.R.I.T. should be allowed to celebrate the fruits of his labor and diversify his discography as much as anyone else. As much as I would’ve loved a 4IAMLT sequel or continuation, if it was just for the sake of continuity, it immediately loses its purpose and its realness.

As long as he’s not out here doing songs with Tekashi, I’m perfectly fine with this album. So check it out above and remember to support dope music in all its forms. Also, if you see me in Silver Spring next week, give me a shout. It’ll probably be hard to see me (remember: I’m 5’7″ on a good day), but I’ll respond.

Speed on the Beat

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