Published Oct 19, 2017On 2015's SubTrap, Maryland rapper IDK conveyed a willingness to "dig deep" and ask himself hard questions. He's now three years into his career, a point by which most rappers have long since abandoned any pretence of concern for their personal growth, but IDK continues to mature. And while its title connotes self-flagellation, IWASVERYBAD is really about making peace with one's past, however stained with age spots accrued from living the life of a Prince County dope boy it is.
By his own reckoning, IDK did a whole lot to imperil his bond with his mother; he brought drugs and guns into a house where education was sacrosanct. Today, he's contrite ("I'm a blink away from tears," he warns on "Black Sheep, White Dove") but undoubtedly grateful. Songs like "Mrs. Lynch, Your Son Is the Devil" and "No Shoes on the Rug, Leave Them at the Door" swell with reverence for the woman who bore him.
Though he raps in the frenetic style of Kendrick Lamar or Isaiah Rashad, IDK has a voice all his own — and with IWASVERYBAD, he'll likely have a succès d'estime on his hands, if not a crowd-pleaser. IWASVERYBAD hews much closer to gospel than D.C. gangsta rap, which might prove too aberrational for some, but that's a small price to pay for reminding listeners of advice worth remembering: honour thy mother. (Adult Swim)