By Alec Matuszak
Arts and Entertainment Editor
Immediately after clicking play on Compton rapper Kendrick Lamar’s new single, “The Heart Part 4” the listener is greeted with the ominous sound of crows chirping and ying away in a flock – just as they would do after an executioner handles his business and puts someone away. This is a very interesting foreshadow, considering Lamar (born Kendrick Duckworth) attempts to silence and dismiss any rapper that tries to take his top spot on his hip-hop throne. After the unorthodox intro, Kendrick Lamar does what he does best, which is rap and tell his feelings with a delivery and flow that is tough to match by any other popular rapper today.
Kendrick seized an opportunity with this single, as the timing of the release comes shortly after Drake’s tremendously successful project “More Life.” After staying under the radar for quite some time, Lamar comes out with a vengeance on this single, scaring fellow rappers while raising their eyebrows at the same time. Even his competitors and peers understand how much of a talent Lamar is. Lamar addresses his prominence in the music industry, rapping “The five foot giant woke up out of his sleep.” As with most musicians that have a platform that reaches a wide audience, Lamar didn’t hold back on his criticism of president Donald Trump, and the involvement of the Russians in the election. “Donald Trump is a chump / know how we feel punk. Tell ‘em that God coming. And Russia need a replay button y’all up to something. Electoral votes look like memorial votes / but America’s truth ain’t ignoring the votes. In addition to getting his feelings out about the state of the nation, Lamar also took time to throw shout out to NBA player Russel Westbrook. So much happened in this sub five minute track, but perhaps Lamar saved the best for the very end, teasing the imminent release of his album on Apr. 7.
“The Heart Part 4” makes a few things clear. Don’t forget about Kendrick Lamar, this will prove to be a mistake if other rappers do so in the future. There is a reason Dr. Dre signed him to a record deal, as he did with Eminem. Lamar’s next album can’t come soon enough. Here’s hoping he sticks to that April date.