By Chad Selliers
Childish Gambino is the best thing you’ve never listened to.
And by the best thing, I mean, THE BEST THING. Donald Glover, AKA Childish Gambino, is my favorite rapper, and chances are that 99% of the people reading this have never even heard of him. I realize this is a sports blog, but stick with me, you won’t regret it.
In what has to be raps best kept secret lives an actor, a writer, a stand-up comedian and pretty much every other fucking thing you could ever dream of. He’s a sextape away from being a pornstar. He’s a football away from being an athlete. Do I sound crazy? Perhaps. But give Donald Glover something to do and he’ll most likely succeed at the task at hand.
After releasing 3 studio albums and 2 mixtapes for free, Childish Gambino has signed with a label, and put out a commercial album, nearly a year in the making. CAMP is its title, and blowing my mind was its mission; and may I say, mission accomplished.
After waiting months after the first whispers of the album, NPR Radio has leaked it tonight. I gave up writing my mid-term paper in order to listen to it, probably giving me an automatic F in my Middle-Eastern History class, but the 56 minutes and change of CAMP has literally redefined music for me, therefore, every second of those 56 minutes was the very definition of worth it.
Maybe a middle-class suburban white boy from Southern Illinois isn’t the best critic of rap, but lyrically, Childish Gambino is untouched. After studying at NYU, he became a writer for 30-Rock, then, a stand-up comedian. His gifts in these two forms of entertainment combined with his incredibly unique rapping and singing voice gives him the venue to become a brilliant lyrical wordsmith, someone who seemingly plays around with lines like God with a pen and paper.
Not swayed yet? Fucking go to NPR right this fucking instant. Download it when it comes out. Go to YouTube. I don’t gives a shit. Just listen to it, and if you have ear drums, an open mind and a decent taste in good musical talent, you will not be disappointed.
This year I’ve listened to Watch the Throne, Finally Famous, Ambition, and pretty much every good rapper if they’ve put out a new album. (Notice I didn’t mention Lil’ Wayne, because he sucks, and Wiz Khalifa, because he sold out.)
None of those hold a candle in a mid 1800’s Amish household to CAMP. And that's no overstatement.
Let’s cover the bases. Lyrically? Phenomenal. The beats? Phenomenal. The production value? Phenomenal. This may be, scratch that, is the best album I’ve ever been fortunate enough to let sodomize my eardrums (in a good way). If it isn’t the rap album of the year, society is fucked. I suggest that you, your friends, your grandparents, your sister in-law, everyone you fucking know, listens to this with an open mind and open ears, because if you do that, there will be no way to possibly be disappointed.
With lines so clever, so witty and so meaningful, and with an album so perfect, so overwhelming and so brilliant, there is absolutely no reason Childish Gambino shouldn’t blow up within the next year. His lyrics relate to everyone, every situation and it’s something you don’t and won’t ever get with any other rapper. Childish Gambino is the most unique rapper in the ‘game’, and I promise you that you will be thanking me once you hear CAMP.