Dom Kennedy Get Home Safely

Dom KennedyGet Home Safely
Good intentions don't always translate into decent music. Although Dom Kennedy has established himself as a trusted representative for hip-hop's resurgent West coast scene, new album Get Home Safely does little to reinforce his status or display any evolution from his mixtape days. At its core, this is an ordinary hip-hop record; Dom reflects on the perils and pleasures of his past while boasting about the current exploits of a cool kid from urban America. While this tried-and-true formula should have been safe, the record gets tied up in its pretentiousness, as Dom doles out shout-outs and speeches on interludes, suggesting some sort of triumph — a bold façade to dress up this shallow, misdirected collection. Tracks with a bit of potential, like nostalgia-riddled, back-in-the-day cliché "17," are bogged down by insufferable offerings like "Tryna Find My Way," with its repetitive, monotonous, failed attempt at melody. Meanwhile, his beats (mostly helmed by the album-sabotaging Futuristiks) do absolutely nothing to save him. The productions aim for cohesiveness, but deliver redundancy, with a small range of unoriginal sounds bouncing between rehashings of Kendrick's "Swimming Pools (Drank)" and uninspired jazz rap. Still, it's difficult to not root for Dom Kennedy, a charming, savvy independent artist. Unfortunately, his ambition leads him astray on this project as he trades in sincerity and individuality to enter territory that doesn't suit his talent or personality. (The Other People’s Money Company)