NPR has been up on their hip-hop game for a little while now, as some of you might recall them streaming Childish Gambino’s album, Camp, a week before its release back in November of 2011. So, continuing with that tradition, NPR has officially upped its street-cred by offering a full-album-stream from the man who has, in my opinion, brought the South back to where it needs to be—respected and in the public eye with pimped out Caddy’s, big booty hoes, pimpin’, a whole lot of trunk rattling bass, soulful synths, funk, and blues—a man with a Southern drawl and old blues soul to make everything in that lengthy tangent as poignant to a white boy from Southern California as it is to people who actually come from the South, from Mississippi, like this man I speak of, Big K.R.I.T.
For those of you who don’t know about the Mississippi rapper/producer Big K.R.I.T. (King Remembered In Time), you have clearly been off of the internet for o, the last two years or so. His free mixtape—if you want to talk semantics, it’s really an album—Return of 4eva was on just about every ‘Best of 2011’ list this past year and his most recent tape, 4eva N A Day was also released to an abundance of critical acclaim. Now, with the release of his highly-anticipated major label debut (Island Def Jam) Live From The Underground just a week away, NPR has given those of us who have been on the internet following K.R.I.T. another gift in time for our top-down and bass up summer cruises in our respective slabs.
Live From the Underground, which was almost entirely produced by K.R.I.T. himself, is a little bit more commercial sounding than some of K.R.I.T.’s earlier material, but is still everything that fans have been waiting for. As always, K.R.I.T. can stand on his own behind the mic just fine, with smooth and heartfelt rhymes that, while preachy at times, are more than welcome when accompanied by his southernplayalistic sonic backdrop—something akin to a beautiful thick woman sliding down a candy-coated stripper pole in front of an old wooden porch with liquor bottles surrounding, oddly enough, a Bible and a guitar. Aside from everything K.R.I.T., the album also has features from everyone from 2 Chainz, Bun B, and Ludacris to Anthony Hamilton and Mississippi blues legend B.B. King.
But enough, this is not a review. Just head over to NPR and decide for yourself whether you want to cop the album that will certainly be on the ‘Best of 2012’ list of your favorite music blog this year when it drops next Tuesday.