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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at SMCVT chapter.

If you haven’t already, you need to listen to Kendrick Lamar’s new album, DAMN. The album makes a statement through Kendrick’s signature storytelling, but there is definitely a more serious vibe to the vast majority of his songs. Issues such as the ever present struggle for equality Black people in America have lived with historically and presently, police brutality, love, and religion are all themes Kendrick raps upon that make this album possibly his strongest, and best one yet. This may be controversial so if you’re sensitive, I would stop reading…now. This is my review of DAMN.


This song is ridiculously powerful. It’s the first song on the album and it addresses the sensitive topic of police brutality. It’s the shortest song and it’s more like a story with some music in the background. I love the meaning behind it, but it’s definitely not something you would bump in your car with the windows down.



Kendrick’s impeccable rap skills are probably showcased the hardest in this song, definitely a banger, no doubt. Alongside his pride for his heritage that he so eloquently raps “I got loyalty, got royalty inside my DNA” Kendrick also brings up the common misconception that rap music negatively influences impressionable African American youths, that all black people are druggies, or dangerous, just some common misconceptions created by white people. This song is cool because of its hard hitting beat and the fact that it address stereotypical viewpoints of African Americans from White Americans.



This song is groovy af. It’s definitely one of those songs to listen to on a warm, sunny day with your windows down. If you listen to the lyrics, he specifically calls out Geraldo Rivera, a known Trump supporter as well as Fox News, also a Trump supporter. This song is great. I’ll leave it at that.



Another banger, for sure. Nothing better than Kendrick using a sexual innuendo as a way to express that he isn’t going to take ish from anyone. A vulgar song the first listen around, but a self-empowering song at heart.



Similar to ELEMENT, this song is definitely self-empowering in the sense that Kendrick is seriously not going to take ish from anyone. You might’ve thought he was kidding in ELEMENT, but he forreal in FEEL. This song is similar to YAH in the sense that it’s pretty wavy. I vibe with it.



This song is pure gold. It is such a jam and Rihanna is perfection. That is all.



This might be my favorite song off the album. Not only does Kendrick show off his rap chops, but I love when he actually sings because the guy can friggin sing! This song is so vibe-y and cool. Nothing like a solid rap song about a guy admitting he was wrong, am I right?



The first single released from the album, this song is dope and if you haven’t heard it yet, you’ve probably been living under a rock. “MY LEFT STROKE JUST WENT VIRAL”– Great.



This song is sexy. There. I said it. The lyrics might be a little vulgar for some, but honestly it’s one of my favorites off the album and the beat is smooth af.



Love or lust? Great question Kendrick. This song is a banger and like I said before, I love when Kendrick actually sings. Another great beat, another great chorus, another great song to bump to driving around campus with your windows down after your 6 AM practice ;)



This song kinda hypes you up to the point where you might feel the need to rob a bank. Don’t do that, but do listen to this song. It goes pretty hard. The topic of gun control is also brought up as the music slows down. Kendrick was not kidding around when he made this album.



This might be my least favorite song on the list to listen to. This track is about the fear black people experience living in the US. The concept of the song should definitely be a topic of discussion, but if you don’t pay attention to the lyrics, it’s not really as memorable as it should be for such a serious topic.



“This what God feel like”–you deserve to feel that way, Kendrick you beautiful specimen of a human being. Great beat in this one and super smooth. Big fan.



This is a pretty solid song to close out the album. You got the storytelling, the impeccable rap skills, the hard hitting beat and mention of KFC, what more could you ask for? It may not be my favorite song off the album, but it’s a solid Kendrick song.


Photo sources:

1. http://www.tinymixtapes.com/sites/default/files/1704/kendrick-lamar-damn…

2. https://giphy.com/gifs/studiosoriginals-3o7btTV6kjvYgEaUqA/links

3. https://giphy.com/gifs/illroots-kendrick-lamar-HZrl3YqJZPruU/links

4. https://giphy.com/gifs/music-video-kendrick-lamar-humble-l0Iy7PEqfkuRr7JwQ/links

5. https://giphy.com/gifs/hiphopawards-bet-hip-hop-awards-2016-26ufdKlT4SEYqyLG8/links


CC for HC SMCVT. Massachusetts girl, who somehow ended up in Northern Vermont. Senior at Saint Michel's College studying Media, Journalism & Digital Arts. Interests include: running, Bridesmaids, bagels, the color navy and guacamole. Firm believer that you can never be overdressed or overeducated.