Feature: Gilbere Forté "Pray" Track-By-Track Breakdown
Tue, 14 May 2013 11:56:37
Gilbere Forté's long-awaited brand new offering, Pray, officially drops Wednesday May 15, 2013. (Update: it's on Gilbere's website now!) It's a sprawling, sweeping, and striking ten song collection that's bound to leave a seismic impact on hip-hop. ARTISTdirect.com editor-in-chief Rick Florino is proclaiming it "one of the best rap albums of 2013" and "a new dawn for the genre".
See this exclusive track-by-track breakdown below and pick up the album Wednesday.
The ride starts here. Building with an angelic hum, Gilbere Forté drops a fiery verse as the airy soundscapes bristle below his voice. At the same time, he manages to shout out "Trader Joe's" and "Danny Elfman" as well as boasting about eating "a couple 'shrooms with your favorite celebrity". From bar one, it's abundantly clear that Forte's not-your-average rapper and shouldn't be compared to anybody else out there. Comparisons won't do him justice. He's in a league of his own. The Detroit-born and Philadelphia-representing MC understands the darkness of Los Angeles as much as its beauty. He also conveys both musically—before ending on a strange voicemail.
Falsetto vocals go toe-to-toe with grating bell sounds just before dropping confessional rapping from Forté. Over production from Active Child that wouldn't be out of place over Inception, he paints a seductive and sexy picture of bedding a The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo decked out in designer shoes before the track slips into an ethereal hook that you won't forget anytime soon.
Danceable beats snap in perfect time with a glimmering synth before dropping the dance floor posture as Forté gets tough lyrically. He delivers a grittier rhyme asking, "Why fuck love with a condom?" It's a question worth pondering over, Facebooking about, Tweeting, and asking everyone you know.
Handclaps and ticking sounds teeter as he exclaims, "My life is a movie". He makes good on that promise with another eerily cinematic track. It's easy to fall into "ANIGMA", especially as Forté's speedy flow kicks into high gear.
The album's centerpiece and title track transposes those handclaps into a propulsive engine fueling a gorgeous Fiona Apple sample out of "Every Single Night" from The Idler Wheel Is Wiser than the Driver of the Screw, And Whipping Cords Will Serve You Mo Its boasts belie an uneasy poetry punctuated by lines like, "I die young to be still alive". He carefully breeds brilliance inside a seedy landscape that's impossible to turn away from.
"Streets Stay Crashing"
The guitar feels plucked from Pink Floyd's The Wall, while his lyrics are purely 21st century contemplation. This is intergalactic rap at its most otherworldly. It's worth blasting off with.
"Down for the Ride"
Here, Forté and De Carlo cruise into new territory. Lyrically, there's a celebratory element of carefree partying. His words take off alongside the skittering beats. This one's perfect for cruising at night to, whether you're alone or hopefully not.
Passing the five-minute mark, "Double Cupped" broods and moves at all the right moments. For almost 40 seconds, shimmering sounds bubble up before our hero once again examines life and its trials and tribulations. His voice echoes through a digital storm as he relays a tale of an unfaithful "chick from 2006".
Another collaboration with Active Child, musically it resembles a perverted Carnivale organ. It's like siphoning the sounds of a freak show through Reason. Meanwhile, Forté gets super pensive.
"Fall For Nothing"
Everything comes to a rapturous close as Forté leaves a closing note for all to open. His ultimate word is bolstered by a strident and soaring cameo from Nylo. Pray is rap's new Bible.
Pray is NOW AVAILABLE to download over at GilbereForte.com!
Photo credit: Nikko La Mere