So all of us cool kids have already heard of Frank Ocean, the artist from west coast Wu-Tang Clan-ish potty mouth teeny crew Odd Future. However, sometime last week Frank Ocean Tumbl’d out the closet with an open letter to a past lover who happened to have a penis.
I read the letter and it seemed real heartfelt and genuine. Then I see the first single off the Channel ORANGE album is with none other than the other MC in the hip hop game that everyone whispers about being gay or bi or at least having come close to another man’s penis –who? Andre 3000, half of my favorite band of all time, Outkast! Sigh… can we get Stankonia pt. II? Is that too much to ask?! Anyway, now I’m thinking waaaaaiiit a second I smell a guerilla marketing campaign somewhere deep in the recess of my demographic!
Lord knows my iPhone needs more music, so I’m off to investigate, first by listening to the bootleg tracks on YouTube, and then the entire album streaming on his Tumblr page. I’m already jaded because two of my music snob friends have said a plethora of things about ORANGE, from it being “one note” to–and this is my fav–“futuristic elevator music.” Now these dudes are the worst kind of hipsters–the kind that won’t admit their hipsterism to themselves. But my spidy senses are tingling now. The song with 3k, “Pink Matter,” is just okay. I do like “Crack Rock,” “Pyramids,” “Monks” and the “Super Rich Kids” joint with Earl Sweatshirt–who is probably the most talented (and potty mouthed) lyricist out the OF crew, and has the most interesting story. His video single for EARL is more Clockwork Orange than Channel ORANGE. I’ll let you google it on your own, it’s not for the faint hearted.
But I digress. I, like you, probably know Frank best from the “Watch the Throne” single “No Church in the Wild,” or his solo “Novacane.” The kid is talented, no doubt. Yesterday I saw that Target refused to sell his album under the guise of non-exclusivity, but Frank’s manager says it’s political. Who knows? For the record, I don’t care who Frank sleeps with, I care if he can make good songs in this world where marketing campaigns and blog posts dictate what’s good (Lana Del Ray, anybody?)
Anyway I have to give it another listen, however I am leaning to just copping a couple singles. Do you like this album? Let me know in the comments.