ALBUM: “3.15.20” by Childish Gambino (Donald Glover)
RELEASE YEAR: 2020
LABEL: Sony Entertainment
BEST TRACKS: “Algorythm,” “12.38” and “42.26”
FCC: Not Clean
This album was gifted to Childish Gambino fans when we needed it most. Released right at the start of quarantine, this album was largely forgotten because of the unfortunate timing. But as I mentioned before, it was a real treat for those of us craving some much-needed musical escapism.
“3.15.20” is largely comprised of a mish-mash of unofficially released singles, the most notable being “42.26,” otherwise known as “Feels Like Summer.” However, there are a handful of songs that were made specifically for “3.15.20.” “Algorhythm,” a terrifying electro-funk ballad, is my personal favorite. It really shows Glover’s tendency to manipulate sound in unique ways. On the more poppy side of things, “12.38” featuring 21 Savage and Kadhja Bonet is an absolute masterpiece. I am in love with 21’s part, with its hitting lyrics and striking snares. Kadhja’s interjecting vocals add an element of depth to the upbeat track too.
The sound that Childish Gambino creates in this album transcends anything he’s done before. His use of autotune and layering makes each song feel so atmospheric. Sometimes when artists rely on autotune it can feel forced and unoriginal, but the way Donald uses it only adds to the vocal talent he naturally has. For example, in “24.19,” his ability to switch seamlessly between his pure voice and a more synthesized sound is impeccable.
“3.15.20” has all of the soul that “Awaken, My Love!” does, but with a darker twist. It’s clear that Donald’s experimentation reached new levels in this album. If you haven’t heard it already, give it a listen!
– DJ Butter