Nov 17, 2015

Editorial Review: #AATWDT And After That We Didn't Talk - @Goldlink (by @RamseySaidWHAT)

Friday the 13th. Super special and important day in music last Friday. That was the original date Goldlink was supposed to release his sophomore project, And After That We Didn't Talk.
It's probably best he moved up. Competition is always fun but to battle out with Logic, Young Jeezy, Redman, Alessia Cara's debut and the likes of Justin Beiber and the Beliebers. would have been quite the task. So to the delight of his fans we got an early present. I took to the Internet and got my copy drove to Kyle's house and completed my listener. When it was over we didn't say much. Ironic because of the title huh? Anyways, Kyle looks at me and asked "Where's that bounce tho?" I reply to him, "It was there but this time he showed us who he really was beyond that." Let's get to it.

Screech...bang! Car crash. Silence. Crickets chirp. The story continues how the God Complex ended. After You Left kicks off today's story. Goldlink breaks down his world and how things have changed since his journey to stardom. Sure the money, cars, clothes, and women are great but in the grand scheme of things they don't have substance. His family life is in shambles. His love life might be worse as he name drops Kali Uchis whom (he collabed with on Divine on the God Complex) he thought he'd be married to. He also mentions Porrah asking her why she left. This kind of eludes to the next song Zipporah which it's probably named after (or Moses's mother for those who know the book of Exodus as well as I). Alarm rings, and every black kid who grew up in a Christian home knows the sound of a mother telling you to get up for Sunday service. I've always liked when rappers ditch a hook and just provide bars. Zipporah does this for me and that's why it's my favorite on the project.

The theme of the song explores many topics important to the DC rapper. Racism in America, Black Parenting, and more are touched. Stressful to say the least. What better a time to pray and thus the purpose of the bridge. Verse two gets deeper. Link reminisces to a love that fell through. I think everyone could relate. A few lyrics hit home and I'm sure any of us who've been in love could relate.

"Go have that baby boy
And make him a better man
Tell him his mother loves him
Just like she used to love me
And play him this tape for you
Tell him what we been through
So we can both raise that child like we promised, we would do"

Bittersweet and Sad. Thankfully it didn't stay this glum for long. The future bounce commences with track three, Dark Skin Women. Zipporah, the Queen of Egypt, was known in the bible for being hated for her dark complexion. According to Link, this song is for all beautiful black women.
The hook is fire and the horns are so sick in this jam. You can't help but dance around in your mirror in your slippers and sweatpants. In one of the singles Spectrum, Louie Lastic samples another Missy Elliot song. This time it's She's a Bitch. I struggled deciphering the Tagalog girl who makes another appearance in Goldlink's newest offering. It's bouncy like the last song and transitions into his first single, Dance on Me quite well. The song still holds replay value as time passed and the Jersey Club influence is clear. Goldlink still doesn't like to be seen and makes no appearance in his own video. Still one to play at your next house party. A small Soulection Radio skit begins Late Night which features Masego. The DMV connection works as TrapHouseJazz meets Future Bounce. You know how I like my genre bending experiments. The midpoint of the album is probably the most fun song here, good job gents.

Lastic returns on the boards in Unique. Goldlink is probably one of the best rappers who sing in the game if not the best. It features Anderson .Paak who provides the only rapping on the track and uses his unique voice in an awesome way. Palm Trees and Polarized follow up and continue the vocal part of the album. Many may see this as experimental but Goldlink's singing voice is good enough he can take a rapping break without hurting the sound of the project, well done. Rap returns in New Black. It's not a yeezy tip but a culture awakening theme that resonate in his verses. He doesn't advocate violence and lies in today's hip-hop music. See I Miss wraps up the album. The beat is super jazzy and sultry. The mood is mellow again and Goldlink enters singing. Even now that it's over, who knew that I would even miss this b*tch. Sure it sounds simple but we all know how complex it is to be in love. The hook fades out and there's no name dropping in the verses this time. It's safe to say as a listener I got my Drake on thinking about my own ex lovers. What's Love got to do with it anyway? Goldlink sings that himself but not quite like Tina Turner or Ashanti (the singer guys leave me alone lol). In reflection Goldlink knows what it was like before, during, and after his interactions with these women and how he knows he's also changed them as they have him. I'm interested to see if Goldlink ever performs this live at a somber setting one day. It would really contrast his more upbeat and electric sets. The chorus continues, and the music fades out. Close your eyes, listen to the radio static and the music is over. We're back in the whip that crashed on the side of the road. The crickets and katydids are still chirping and the album is over.

Louie Lastic and Goldlink are becoming a serious one two punch. I don't know if it was because I was in a serious crossroads in my life upon listening, but this one hit deep. Only 11 tracks and took about a half hour to listen. I'm impressed because it was a complete project rather than a collection of songs. It was order among the chaos, and everything was intricately placed and ordained to be in its spot. It was meant to be listened to straight through without skipping. This isn't something you put on shuffle or repeat. Aside from the music, Goldlink is intelligent and tends to flex his knowledge of theology. I mean look at the Zipporah references in this project. While listening to Goldlink I always have to keep google handy so I can figure out what "Ahmadinejad" means and how difficult it was to rhyme Arabic words with English (Bedtime Story). And After That, We Didn't Talk is an easy listen. The mood takes a few turns and isn't all just one genre of music. I was also surprised Movin' On didn't make the final cut. As far as album of the year Goldlink's offering has to be at least a nominee and in everyone's conversation. I feel super bias giving this a number rating so I'll stray this time around. However you can listen to the Spotify stream below.

Jonathan C. Ramsey
Jonathan C. Ramsey

Multimedia Journalist, Founder and Chief Editor of WTM Host of A-Side B-Side Podcast and more. I like to talk about stuff and write it down. Sometimes to a microphone. Either way, I need you to feel this.

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