Pitchfork Review: To Pimp a Butterfly 9.3

Kendrick Lamar’s major-label albums play out like Spike Lee films in miniature. In both artists’ worlds, the stakes are unbearably high, the characters’ motives are unclear, and morality is knotty, but there is a central force you can feel steering every moment. The "Good and Bad Hair" musical routine from Lee’s 1988 feature School Daze depicted black women grappling with colorism and exclusionary standards of American beauty. Mookie’s climactic window smash in 1989’s Do the Right Thing plunged its characters into fiery bedlam, quietly prophesying the coming L.A. riots in the process. In these moments, you could feel the director speaking to you directly through his characters and their trajectories. Lamar’s records, while crowded with conflicting ideas and arguing voices, have a similar sense of a guiding hand at work.

Read Full Review: http://pitchfork.com/reviews/albums/20390-to-pimp-a-butterfly/

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