Published Nov 18, 2016Unsurprisingly, Atlanta has produced another wildly talented artist. 24-year-old 6LACK (pronounced "black") has released his debut album, FREE 6LACK, a featureless project comprised of nebulous melodies and mid-tempo beats.
Reminiscent of Bryson Tiller's Trapsoul, FREE 6LACK combines the modern R&B sounds of PARTYNEXTDOOR or Roy Woods with the trap elements of Metro Boomin. Yet, 6LACK is different from his contemporaries: his deep and sombre voice combines with reflective and soulful lyrics to create a project that stands out on its own.
The album's lyrics read like a stolen diary that reveals the past five years of 6LACK's life. From a restrictive label deal and periods of homelessness ("Never Know" and "Rules") to relationship mistakes ("PRBLMS" and "Luving U"), FREE 6LACK reflects on deeply personal yet often relatable experiences. Anthemic single "Ex Calling," which samples the melody in Future's "Perkys Calling," will speak to anyone who has experienced liberating self-growth after ending a toxic relationship.
"Gettin' Old" is a pro-love track that stands out courtesy of 6LACK's soft vocals and a melody decidedly less dark from the others. However, FREE 6LACK's final two-part track, "Alone/EA6," is the most revealing track on the album — it's laced with clips of 6LACK discussing his goals as an artist, his relationship with God and his sense of purpose.
Overall, FREE 6LACK is a debut album that affirms 6LACK's status as a talented newcomer. Time will tell if the artist's prowess will continue to shine on future projects.
Order FREE 6LACK on vinyl via Umusic here. (LoveRenaissance / Interscope Records)