Mississippi Hip-Hop recording artist/producer/activist David Banner has just released his most dynamic album ever, #TheGodbox, a long-overdue banger that just hits hard on every level.
It might be hard to believe that the same artist who once brought us The Boondocks-themed track “B.A.N. (The Love Song)” could produce something so perfectly crafted. Banner uses everything from heavy guitar riffs to modern trap beats, blending elements of funk, soul, contemporary R&B, classical and pop music, with that style of Southern we’ve come to expect.
The album had originally been scheduled for release last year, but things got held up with the label, and wouldn’t be finished until 2017. Banner decided to hold off on the final release until May 19—the same day, Human Rights activist Malcolm X, was born—as a symbolic gesture and tribute to great leaders before him.
In recent years, Banner has become much more vocal when it comes to government, his views on politics, and even the Black Lives Matter movement, and he doesn’t hold back on #TheGodBox, with tracks such as, “Black Fist feat. Tito Lo,” “My Uzi feat. UGK and Big K.R.I.T.,” and “Evil Knievil feat. Ernestine Johnson.”
The album opens with “Magnolia” a hard-hitting rap featuring the mighty Cee-Lo Green (the Soul Machine) and Raheem Devaughn. It brilliantly sets the tone for the rest of the album, with a dark, powerful message… “will the seasons ever change?”
Black Thought, lyricist of the Philadelphia Hip-Hop group, The Roots, joins Banner on the track “Who Want It,” which, you could almost swear, sounds like a Questlove-drum beat.
Another noteworthy track, “Elvis,” throws shade on the mainstream media, for making role models out of celebrities and pop stars, and today’s consumerist-driven culture.
Banner also looks at the stigma around Black artists’ use of the N-Word, on the track “Amy” feat. Trinidad James, and how it’s often misused in modern culture, rebutting “you’re supposed to be a God.”
Towards the middle of the album, things shift gears rather abruptly, yet, Banner pulls it off. “Marry Me,” features the soulful sound of vocalist Rudy Currence, who steals the spotlight on this soothing R&B joint. Meanwhile, “Judy Blare” gives off an almost punk rock vibe on this fast-paced track featuring Devon Lewow on guitar/backing vocals.
Atlanta-based rap artist Kap-G joins in on the track “Traffic on Mars,” a spaced out beat that’s perfect when you’re stuck in traffic or when you just want to “blast off” and take a toke at the end of a long day.
The album closes with the outro, an incredible mix of ambient sound, world music, and spoken word poetry from Wizdom Selah. It’s a beautiful conclusion to a beautiful album.
#TheGodBox the seventh studio album from Mississippi Hip-Hop recording artist, David Banner, is now available from A Banner Vision.