Album Review: Get a taste of ‘GINGER’ by BROCKHAMPTON

No one’s life is perfect. We all have our own personal struggles that help us grow and become the people we are today.

In its fifth studio album, “GINGER,” self-proclaimed boyband BROCKHAMPTON expresses the feelings we go through as we come face-to-face with the imperfections we have in our lives. Fans of BROCKHAMPTON have eagerly awaited “GINGER” since the founding member of the group, Kevin Abstract, announced it in July. 

While “GINGER” might not live up to past releases, it certainly does not fail to showcase their overall talent through its lyricism and musical production. The album starts off slowly with “NO HALO” and “SUGAR.” These songs are a perfect introduction to the album, dealing with themes of failed relationships and substance abuse and building onto later tracks.

Through their lyrics, the band members let listeners know about their own personal struggles and how they had to own up to them. This prepares listeners for heavier topics that come later in the album.

The following tracks switch it up as the beats start to get faster. Songs like “ST. PERCY” and “IF YOU PRAY RIGHT” use more bass and experiment with different sounds such as the trombone. New listeners may find this unusual, but it should be no surprise to loyal fans as BROCKHAMPTON is known for experimentation. 

The track that has gained the most attention by fans is “DEARLY DEPARTED.” It is directed towards the departure of ex-member Ameer Vann, who left the group due to allegations of sexual misconduct. 

The song tugs at the heartstrings and feels like a goodbye letter to those that have been a part of your life but suddenly have to leave. You know what you want to say to them, but you just can’t put the words together. Luckily, BROCKHAMPTON has figured out how to do that with this heartbreaking track. 

With the title track, Abstract wants the group and his fans to feel closer than ever. He reassures listeners that despite whatever they’re going through, they will be alright. Abstract expresses this in his verse, singing, “And know you got your own space right here forever, baby (And my own blessing).”

The album finishes with “VICTOR ROBERTS,” a track mainly vocalized by the man himself. Roberts is a new artist welcomed into the fray of talent that BROCKHAMPTON likes to feature on its music from time to time. 

Roberts speaks about his troubled home life growing up, and how it made him the man he is today. Despite it being the last track, this is one of the most personal songs on the album. It truly shows how open BROCKHAMPTON can be about the struggles its members had to face before coming into fame, making it the perfect song to end with. 

Compared to BROCKHAMPTON’s past releases, this album might be the most toned-down musically. With its previous albums, the group has experimented with bass-boosted beats and aggressive rapping. With “GINGER,” the music feels mostly subdued in a way that is trying to let the lyrics shine. This isn’t a bad choice considering how personal the lyrics are. 

BROCKHAMPTON doesn’t make music for one type of audience. Do you want a fast-paced song with a heavy bass? It has one. Do you want a song that will move and calm you? It has one. With this album’s intricate sound and meaningful lyrics, listeners are sure to find a track or two (perhaps even more) they will become fond of off “GINGER.” 

acqn3@mail.umkc.edu

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