To Pimp A ButterflyReleased: 2015Kendrick Lamar
LINER NOTES: Kendrick Lamar, To Pimp A Butterfly (2015)
Instant classic. That paradoxical, tangled appellation is perhaps the signal excess of an overheated culture of instant commentary. One can imagine it weaving its way through the anonymous byways of social media in a scramble for distinction among a vast sea of potential tastemakers. In such a world, exaggeration and hyperbole seep so readily into our language of criticism, that we forget just how unsettled such a pronouncement should make us. The juxtaposition is jarring; its two terms sit uncomfortably next to one another, upending the normal relations of time, art, and judgment.