BROCKHAMPTON is back with the first installment in their new trilogy, iridescence, and it’s easily their best album yet. Coming off 2017’s SATURATION trilogy, which rocketed the hip-hop collective from cult status to mainstream phenomenon, the 15-man group has defies expectations by releasing some of the most left-field music they’ve ever made.
BH sounds a lot noisier on some parts of this album, with droning, blood pumping beats that could belong to Danny Brown. They also throw in many softer, more emotional cuts, with dramatic but sincere instrumentation that sounds just as detailed and professional as a symphony orchestra. The album also dabbles in straight-up pop music on “SOMETHING ABOUT HIM,” and even features a Christian rock-esque crescendo on “SAN MARCOS.”
However, no matter where this album goes, it still feels like the most coherent BROCKHAMPTON project yet. The group has gone through plenty of drama since SATURATION: a loss of one of their founding members due to assault allegations, a record deal with RCA, and unprecedented fame. The group channels these changes directly in songs like “TONYA” and “LOOPHOLE,” but the real change is heard in the improvements of many of BH’s vocalists. Merlyn exercises a bigger range, Joba employs a new vocal style reminiscent of old-school Eminem, and Bearface and Matt Champion generally appear on the album much more.
An emphasis is placed more on the group this time around, but members like Kevin Abstract bring the heat they’re expected to bring to any BH affair. With a range that spans from noise-rap bangers to cinematic meditations, it’s cohesive, energetic, orgasmic, and it never stops moving. The duality of this album speaks to the duality of BH’s story; growing up and blowing up can be both good and bad.
Thematic analysis aside, this album is just plain stunning; it’s hard to imagine anybody not loving iridescence.
Score:🤰 🤰 🤰 🤰 🤰/5