Album Review: ‘Anomaly’

Christian rapper Lecrae released his new album, “Anomaly,” on Sept. 11. The album is named “Anomaly” because of his unique testimony.

Anomaly kicks off with the dark, piano-laden track “Outsiders.” Combining strings and pianos with a snappy, hard-hitting baseline, “Outsiders” is an outstanding intro track to the album.

Elements included throughout the album are a heavy base, smooth lyrical delivery and a certain cleanness and polish to the production, which differs from the often unfocused and sometimes chaotic production heard on one of his other albums, “Gravity.”

A few songs illustrating this new musical approach include: “Nuthin,” “Say I Won’t (featuring fellow Reach Records rapper Andy Mineo), “All I Need Is You,” “Time Piece” and “Messengers,” with For King and Country supplying the vocals on the chorus of that track. It may take a few listens to like and appreciate Lecrae’s new approach to the production, but ultimately it will be an enjoyable listen for any hip-hop fan.

Lecrae opens up about his fears about the spiritual effectiveness of his new message in a number of songs on this album, but none more so than “Fear.” The lyrics, “Will I hear well done when he turn to me; Will I hear you care too much about all of this stuff that really don’t matter?” expose this. As far as the lyrical critique of not mentioning Jesus explicitly in his music, the following line adds a little humor to the issue: “Jesus, Jesus, Jesus, Jesus, Jesus to all of my haters, for the ones that think I forgot Him and the ones who won’t let me say it.”

Apart from addressing his personal life, Lecrae also addresses topics such as slavery (“Dirty Water”), current American issues (“Welcome to America”) and the love he has for his wife (the popular single, “All I Need Is You”). His other track, “Nuthin,” criticizes mainstream rappers for having the same hedonistic messages about cars, money, sex and drugs told over and over in their songs.

Without a doubt, the hardest hitting lyrics on the album can be found on the introspective track “Good, Bad, Ugly.” Lecrae opens the door on a part of his past that he has never discussed in his music before. He reveals his regret for the role he played in the abortion of a child, as well as the fact that he was molested as a child. Lecrae’s authenticity on this track is very powerful, and one can’t help but feel for him when listening to it.

“Anomaly” certainly deserves all the hype it is getting; the production is solid, Lecrae’s flow in his delivery is top notch, and the message is very relevant and powerful. It’s refreshing to see a rapper with the message that Lecrae has at the top of the charts. Anyone who is a fan of hip-hop and rap can listen to this album and appreciate the work put into it as well as enjoy it more and more with every listen.

Conner Ghiz is a sophomore technical and professional communication major and arts and entertainment writer for Cedars. He loves listening to music and going to Roosters Wings. 

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