Rap artist Kendrick Lamar, labeled as the West Coast’s savior, experiments with strongly biblical themes including religion, violence, monogamy and lust in his second studio album, good kid, m.A.A.d city.
The album begins with an unscripted recording of a prayer Lamar and his friends recited. They repent their sins in “Sherane A.K.A. Master Splinter’s Daughter,” which serves as an opening statement.
“The Art of Peer Pressure” describes Lamar disobeying his parents’ constant voicemails to bring the car home and engaging in dangerous behavior while he expresses the fear and allure of gangs and police in a diverse monologue. In “good kid,” he struggles to fight against the gang violence that tries to draw him in and frantically describes the “mad” elements of Compton, Calif., and sufferings of reality in “m.A.A.d city.”
After the violence subsides, “Sing About Me, I’m Dying of Thirst” delivers a plethora of emotions that help listeners visualize empathetic descriptions of those who have been gunned down and have passed away.
Overall, good kid, m.A.A.d city is a complex and successful record chronicling Lamar's life and inspiring rappers everywhere.