By Hardcore Critic
Hip Hop Vibe Staff Writer
Today in hip hop was everything it was cracked up to be, but last week should not be overlooked for the lone reason that Jarren Benton dropped My Grandma’s Basement. At a time when hip hop was all over the place, Jarren Benton released an album all of hip hop can relate to. Everyone has gone through a “rock bottom” period and dug deep,
Not everyone has literally had to move into their grandma’s basement, but everyone has struggled. Jarren Benton did not let the situation define him, he instead turned what could be an embarrassing situation into his biggest triumph. It takes guts to name a debut album My Grandma’s Basement and Jarren Benton fans know he is fearless.
Everything from featuring his grandmother on the cover of My Grandma’s Basement to featuring her on the intro, Jarren Benton set the tone. If there is one resonating message on this album, it is that Jarren Benton is not like anyone else in this rap game. He teased his eccentric style this past spring and gave the full dose in the summer.
Out of the gate, Jarren Benton comes out very dark, but clearly lets people know he is NOT Tyler, the Creator. Darkness does not define Jarren Benton, nor does living in his grandmother’s basement. Instead, these are the things Jarren Benton felt at certain points while going through this life-shaping experience. There are such songs as “Go Off,” the single featuring SwizZz and Hopsin where Jarren Benton details the times he literally wanted to go off because he was frustrated.
In the end, everything was channelled to make music and the result of this was My Grandma’s Basement. The album is an overall masterpiece with top-notch production and properly-timed collaborations. Funk Volume has made its name for doing things outside of the box and this continues with Jarren Benton and My Grandma’s Basement. One thing about My Grandma’s Basement is that listening to one song is impossible because it opens up the entire album, sinking people into the album.
Ultimately, reflecting on albums is what makes them the classic, but if one had to bet on a recent classic, Jarren Benton would be a safe bet. My Grandma’s Basement is an honest account of when life gives out lemons and a person with every reason to give up instead made lemonade for the whole world to enjoy, especially with such songs as “Skitzo,” “Yaya (Intro),” “Dreams,” “I Deserve It,” “Life in the Jungle,” and the singles in which the public are already familiar with. This album is definitely a breath of fresh air.
Hip Hop Vibe’s Rating: 9/10