"KOD": Psychedelic therapy by J. Cole
With titles Motiv8 and ATMJ. Cole intensifies his criticism of the American dream, which has become centered on the perpetual quest for ever more money, by all means. Finally, in Kevin's Heart, the artist takes the point of view of a drug lover who tries to eradicate her from her system and her life, after she has led him to lust and deception.
If rap is a drug, J. Cole is a very good dealer. With KOD, the American rapper serves us a psychedelic album on the verge of hallucination, and consume without moderation. Critical!
Not to be missed
"There are many ways to deal with the bread". And J. Cole's new album is one. KOD, used for both Kids On Drugs, Kids Overdrugged, and Kill Our Demons, is the North Carolina rapper's fifth album. Throughout this rather conceptual album, J. Cole plunges us into an America ravaged by drugs and the cult of money. It is, in fact, a universe very different from the two previous albums of the rapper, who were much more intimate. KODthus has the merit of proving to us that J. Cole is not limited to only one genus. Here, the instrumental are psychedelic, and the rapper's flow is demonstrative, as if, over the pieces, J. Cole himself was under the influence of a mysterious drug. To reinforce this effect, Cole invents two featurings with the enigmatic Edward Kill, who is himself with the over-modified voice, like a kind of alter-ego, an inner demon.
Drugs and money as main themes
"This album does not want to glorify the addiction", is it written on the cover of the album where J. Cole enthroned, above six zombified children, dehumanized by drugs. It might sound like a paradox, but over and over, it seems like KOD's goal is to soften, soothe, or even detoxify. J. Cole represses his demons and those of a devastated country, like the song FRIENDS in which the rapper does not hesitate to blame the system and the American policies of the plague of the ultra-abusive consumption of all sorts of drugs. With titles Motiv8 and ATMJ. Cole intensifies his criticism of the American dream, which has become centered on the perpetual quest for ever more money, by all means. Finally, in Kevin's Heart, the artist takes the point of view of a drug lover who tries to eradicate her from her system and her life, after she has led him to lust and deception. So, this album is neither a pure criticism nor an exaggerated kind of trip, but rather a therapy. The motto: expel to better heal.
A self-produced album from A to Z
KOD had been announced by J. Cole himself on Twitter, just two days before its release. The ad was simple, spontaneous: "New album. KOD 4/20", and was then retweeted almost a million times. The surprise was total, and therefore all the more appreciable. At a time when other rappers, such as Drake, use and abuse the media visibility with clips and television appearances, J. Cole prefers to do everything alone. It is indeed a very lonely rapper, who seems to love to take charge of everything from production to promotion. Witness the fact that since his last two albums, 2014 Forrest Hills Drive and 4 Your Eyez OnlyJ. Cole never surrounds himself with any producer or featuring. The proof that one is never better served than by oneself.
KOD is above all a conceptual album, which listens without interruption, like a story. In addition to proving his perpetual capacity for renewal, J. Cole also shows us that one does not have to be expected to be appreciated, and that the surprise effect pays much more than a superficial expectation.