It was John Lydon who noted that anger was an energy, a sentiment with which Kendrick Lamar would probably agree. To Pimp A Butterfly is an angry record – ferociously and furiously so – but this is laser-guided rage.
While previous album good kid, M.A.D.D. city had the rapper exploring and observing life in his native Compton with such skill that he took you to those mean streets with every rhyme, he's moved beyond those city limits here to outline his thoughts on black America.
That he has chosen to do so against a large, radical rash of jazz and funk is hugely telling too, Lamar taking those black protest music standards to another level. But it’s the lyrical content which resonates and rockets, Lamar throwing erudite punches and picking intellectual fights all over the shop.
A record for the times we’re in.