by Jack Carenza Courtesy of TodaysHipHop.com
Originally from the East New York section of Brooklyn Carnegie Kid comes with a unique rap brand that is both classic and innovative. A true student of music as a whole, he lists his greatest influences as Prince and Michael Jackson. Blending unique song premisses with a witty pun and impeccable delivery, he boastfully represents his L> FTFi brand.
It is common for a rapper to claim his city. Inject their sound with its essence, rock the fitted cap, fit into the style of their regionality. Often times, it feels like this practice is mandatory rather than authentic – and tends to generate music that sounds vaguely familiar, like off-brand cola. In a borough like Brooklyn, rappers are a dime a dozen, and it takes pure creativity to stand out. Rather than imbue his music with his city, born in Brooklyn Carnegie Kid really personifies the city. It transpires in his confidence, his approach, his performance and his lyricism. Carnegie is defined by his city, which in turn sets his music apart, rather than drawing on his aimless roots.
Last month Carnegie Kid released their second album, Prince of Kings County. Thematically, the album is supported by a multifaceted and dual notion of the representation of God. Carnegie uses superb contrast in the selection of rhythms to support his lyricism, which sets this platform for tracks that reflect the dichotomy of God’s purpose on both sides of the coin.
About his work, Carnegie States, “I try to attack the premise from an angle that is both optimistic and pessimistic, creating a theme of juxtaposition.” This approach influences a listener to reflect on the natural contradictions that exist within religion, life, and ourselves. Every thought, every action is countered by its opposite, and Carnegie explores this clash with superb lyricism, particularly by pairing opposing subjects in Ezekiel 25:17 vs. My God and Pritty vs. Climax. In Pritty, Carnegie raps: (“crush yessir, skinny and pretty as always”), demonstrating self-esteem and self-confidence, which he then juxtaposes with Climax where this appreciation of beauty is external, intended for a woman; (“All praise to the Lord who designed this”). In his words, “Pritty’s vanity where I admire myself is juxtaposed with Climax where I admire someone else.” Every action has a feedback, and Carnegie does a great job reminding us of these natural paradoxes throughout. Prince of Kings County.
Along with strong lyricism and thematic cohesion, Carnegie Kid employs a strong delivery and distinctive voice, with his signature baritone growl and sprawling flow. The uniqueness of each rhythm allows the vocals to flourish in different backdrops, and are complemented by clean adlibs and dubs, and are mixed well. It is best to listen to the album from front to back, as the relationship of each song to its reverse becomes more apparent. In all, Prince of Kings County is a complete, thoughtful and well produced album, full of the courage, determination and poetic nature that define Brooklyn hip hop.
To learn more about Carnegie Kid, you can find his music on all major streaming services and at Instagram. Be sure to check out this emerging talent live Sunday September 26 To Swingz located at 1542 Fulton Street at Bed-Stuy.