KAMAU, a D.C. native, recently dropped his new, enlightening EP A Gorgeous Fortune on July 1st, 2016. More often than not do first impressions turn up black and white. They can be great. Or they can end with a loathing, sour taste. In this case, the initial impressions of this dude were that scientists somewhere must have combined Anderson .Paak and Andre 3000 into one über-rapper. Either that, or they learned how to perform the fusion dance and combined to create Goku like levels of sound. The result is straight up jaw-dropping.
Running for six tracks, A Gorgeous Fortune contains a distinct musical purity and shies away from digital sounding production, heightening the rawness of KAMAU’s lyrics. The opening track, “Jambo,” serves as an intro to the EP and is a great appetizer for the beautiful platter that makes up A Gorgeous Fortune‘s composition. The video for “Jambo” is visually striking as well, featuring KAMAU as a dark silhouette getting wild in a barren white space.
The transition into “Jusfayu” is effortless and features No Wyld, a hip-hop/indie-rock band hailing from New Zealand. Catchy and upbeat are only a few words that can describe this track as KAMAU pleads his case for love.
While “Jusfayu” was upbeat, the third track “Gaims” takes that vibe to a whole other level and is the perfect follow-up; it shows just how tricky relationships can be. While this might sound like a downer, KAMAU flips it into a positive track about how sometimes guys go through the ringer to even get a girls’ attention, but they keep playing games. It’s KAMAU’s revelation about respecting independence. “Gaims” is placed perfectly in the middle of the EP and all the catchy hooks and pop appeal he’s capable of further proves that the D.C. artist has potential to thrive in the mainstream.
All of his music videos currently published create a storyline that is continued on to the next if it hasn’t been clear yet. For reference, the next track is titled “BooDha,” in which KAMAU raps “She a buddha with a booty”; and what was the last thing we saw in the “Gaims” video? That’s right, that booty doe. “Gaims” was posted a week ago and is the latest video for the EP while we wait for the rest of the visuals. This is a campaign that’s well-thought and show range in style, hard work, and creativity just by grabbing the essence of his songs and projecting it into a visual. He and his team make it look easy.
The final two tracks, “FoolMoon” and “PohLease” are good closers and both powerful in their own right. The latter touches on current racial issues we have here in the U.S. and is a chilling testament, one that rivals To Pimp a Butterfly for its honesty. By the end of the song, it’s inspiring enough to march right outside and join the revolution KAMAU is speaking of. Even the first line provokes instant goosebumps.
As a black person in America / When you see the police / Say a little prayer to the shepherd / Who let wolves guard the sheep”
Throughout A Gorgeous Fortune, KAMAU gets extremely personal and shows the wide range of musical tools he holds in his arsenal. He has found that balance to remain an individual through his artistry; even with my early comparisons. The funky wording in the song titles adds another layer to the EP that represents KAMAU’s message and forms a cohesive unity to the project. He shows he cares about his music and makes a direct connection to himself through it. It’s rare that an EP can touch a person so heavily but this one hits home and hits hard. It’s an understatement to say that a full-length album from KAMAU would be a huge gift. In the meantime, A Gorgeous Fortune is more than enough to grab listeners by the collar and listen.
Stream KAMAU’s EP below and for more on everything hip-hop, keep reading on at TrueToo.