by Ben Boddez
ScHoolboy Q – CrasH Talk
After delaying his fifth studio album following the death of his close friend Mac Miller, TDE rapper ScHoolboy Q’s CrasH Talk is finally here. Taking a break from the quirky high-concept material of his past, every song on this project gets straight to the point.
ScHoolboy Q has never been the most technically gifted rapper, but he certainly has one of the most commanding voices in the rap game. Often rhyming over what sounds like a horror movie soundtrack with a trap beat, Q’s menacing, grimy delivery slices through and draws attention even when he’s not saying all that much. There’s a lot of empty space in his flow, choosing each of his words carefully.
CrasH Talk is one of Q’s most cohesive projects yet in terms of its sound. Skittering hi-hats keep the energy up throughout, but the album offers a few surprises as well when Q adapts his sound to fit his guests. “Lies” sees him playing off the soulful Ty Dolla $ign, while he dives into the paranoid psychedelia of Kid Cudi on “Dangerous”. The best guest of all proves to be 21 Savage on “Floating,” spitting the closest thing to Q’s brand of understated yet threatening confidence.Interscope, Interscope Records, Schoolboy Q