By Kiah Easton, Editorial Director
[Awful Father; 2020]
Key tracks: “Spell Book”, “Fist of the North Star”, “Come Outside, We Not Gone Jump You”
2020 has been a suboptimal for most but Father seems to be unphased in terms of productivity, putting out his second project of the year. Contrasting Tha Thingz I Do For Money’s stripped-back, dirty pallette, Come Outside, We Not Gone Jump You has a much more meshed sound, with each element glued tightly together making singular waves of sound. Much of the vocals are less pronounced, with a slippery flow he refuses to articulate fully, giving the album a lulling, hazy impression. The production is softly melodic, similar to songs on Hu$band, but with a less defined sound, making it hard for anything to stand out. Songs like “Joestar” and “ICEMAN” on Hu$band have a gentle, adaptive beauty that is fitting for a sweaty room of close friends or a laidback, cup-of-tea kind of night. Songs on this project, however, don’t pack as much of a punch, coming off more sluggish than laidback.
The first few seconds off “Spell Book” could easily fit in lofi hip hop radio – beats to relax/study to. Lo-fi, Mellotron-esque pads saunter in, loosely reinforced by textured snares and sparse hi hats. Father fills out the thin beat with his signature flow and the addition of sparse and infectiously cute background vocals. Like many of the songs on Come Outside, We Not Gone Jump You, it greets you warmly but remains fairly linear in its progression. gen z brain listeners will lose attention quickly.
“Fist of the North Star” feels like stepping into a dimly lit room. Softly crunchy shakers and low frequency ambience leave room at the top for Father’s airy voice to slither as background vocals dance around your ears. Full and luscious, the song fills your ears. But once again, after its initial impact, the lack of progression on the track leaves the listener drifting off, and that’s not just because it sounds like a lullaby.
“Come Outside, We Not Gone Jump You” is the title track for a reason. Another slue of ambient pads and a delicately plucked synth melody start the track off, quickly giving way to a soft but firm 808 pattern. Wasting no time, Father croons the song’s namesake “Come outside, its cool, we not gone jump you.” Similar to that statement, the song feels eerily calming, as if the soothing pads and hi hat trills are a façade only there to conceal a hidden threat. The song, unlike some of the others on the project, is soft and melodic but unmistakably grimy in Father’s typical style. More than many of the others, the title track embodies the things that make Father memorable: delicate trap beats, catchy hooks, slimy flows, etc.
Come Outside, We Not Gone Jump You is a continuation of Father’s past work. Many of the elements present in previous projects are here, but the secret ingredient seems to be missing. The sum of the parts feels more like background music than is typical of Father. Rarely requesting full attention, the album is enjoyable but only passively.