Is this what the kids call vibing?

Reviews

KAYTRADANA’s BUBBA is a fresh-baked pumpkin pie of powerful messages and creamy cadence

by Kevin O’Neil | Arts & Entertainment Editor
Photos courtesy of highnobiety.com & pitchfork.com 

9/10

KAYTRADANA is a Hattian-Canadian artist, producer and DJ whose newest album, BUBBA, is more than the common hodgepodge of shallow and colorless tracks that many releases are taken to be. As it turns out, it’s a brilliant assemblage of tremendously thoughtful songs that each tackle their own theme with their own unique sonic flavor while using the same, unifying aural template.

First comes the Vibe™, for lack of a better word. It’s the first thing that hits the listener. Each track bears a similar laid-back thrum of bass driving it forward, with vocal features from scads of other artists dancing atop this fortifying throb, riding the waves. Each one of these voices lends their own signature to their respective song, and when combined with beats and rhythms created from a twisted variation of that same central Vibe™, they give each one an auditory identity of their own.

KAYTRANADA1

For instance, take BUBBA’s determinative track, “Midsection”. As the final song of the

album, it’s a bit different from the rest, being a bit faster, with more of a bouncy, Bob Marley-ish sort of sound sprouting from it. This is a song about Humanity, in all of her variations, and how those differences, bearing their own individual beauties, can unify into something all the more wondrous. It mainly focuses on issues that have mired societies, though gender disparity is really the seed from which this grew.

At the end of every verse, the tone changes to be higher and more ethereal. This happens as visiting vocalist Pharrell Williams switches from talking directly to the audience, to talking about “her,” a female figure likely representative of all womankind. Each verse ends with “I see power when I see her midsection”. Now on its own, that may seem as just a run-of-the-mill sexual line, but in the song’s context of the streets bring crowded pleas to talk “about it”.

Though, all in all, KAYTRANADA’s BUBBA, regardless of thoughtfulness, is a fantastic album for everyone who’s looking to pass the vibe check.