By Trevor Jones
So far, 2019 has mostly been full of forgettable trap/hip-hop projects, but that should change in the near future as Kevin Abstract, BROCKHAMPTON’s frontman, and Kevin Parker (AKA Tame Impala) have started to tease sounds off their respective upcoming albums.
Way back in the beginning of the summer of 2017, hip-hop heads, hipsters, and everyone in between were introduced to the boy-band known as BROCKHAMPTON, an LA-based group of guys (13 to be exact) who were attempting to independently break into the music industry with their unique sound. 4 Albums (SATURATION I-III (2017), iridescence (2018)), and several tours/festivals later, I think it’s safe to say that they’ve realized that goal. In fact, iridescence debuted at #1 on the Billboard charts. If you didn’t know, Kevin Abstract is the genius behind BH’s inception, and, unlike the other members of the group, Abstract was known well before the release of SATURATION. His first album, American Boyfriend: A Suburban Love Story (2016), is what brought him into the indie spotlight. Many fans, including myself, thought his solo career would be halted due to BH’s enormous success. But, I was wrong; since the release of iridescence, BH has been shockingly quiet, and Abstract has been teasing content from a solo album. In a short Instagram video posted in late March, we see the phrases, “Teach me empathy, Teach me how to feel, Teach me how to trust, Teach me how to change” followed by the album’s likely title: ARIZONA baby. He then posted another video earlier this week featuring a very interesting snippet of him rapping over a classic BH-like beat (Romil Hemnani is rumored to have produced the entire project). Given that Abstract saturated (no pun intended) the music world with incredible tunes in such a little amount of time, his 7-month absence has felt like an eternity.
On the other hand, the musical hiatus of Kevin Parker, or Tame Impala, has actually lasted an eternity. The Aussie’s third album, Currents, was released all the way back in July of 2015. To give a little perspective, that was a time when our freshman class had yet to enter their 6th-grade year. For a few years, it seemed as though Parker had disappeared, but in 2018, he resurfaced. The talented polymath produced “Tomorrow” off of Kali Uchis’ Isolation (listen to that project ASAP), “Violent Crimes” from Kanye’s ye, and “SKELETONS” from Travis Scott’s summer hit, ASTROWORLD. A$AP Rocky even sampled one of his older tracks on “Sundress”. Although fans were pleased with Parker’s return, they were still longing for some groovy psych-rock/pop under his Tame Impala moniker. Well, in late March, Parker finally gifted the world a new track titled “Patience”, and the album hype now has a legitimate basis. He is doing a lengthy festival run this spring/summer so we can anticipate LP4 relatively soon.
When both of these artists release their projects, expect coverage of them right here on The Beat.