Kendrick Lamar - Damn.
Kendrick Lamar has always combined the personal with the political. In 2015, “Alright” - off the album “To Pimp A Butterfly” - became an anthem of the Black Lives Matter movement. The song was an exploration of the hardships Lamar has endured and has seen many others endure. The chorus however was a declaration of hope: “We Gon Be Alright”. On “DAMN.” - the 2017 follow-up - he seems not so sure about that anymore. It’s an album that thematizes his own condition as well as America’s as a whole and it shifts between doubt and triumph. Lamar is a fantastic storyteller and the musically more stripped-down approach gives his verses even more space to shine on this album.