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Bandana Image
Metascore
87

Universal acclaim - based on 22 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.7

Universal acclaim- based on 115 Ratings

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  • Artist(s): Madlib
  • Summary: The second full-length studio collaboration between Freddie Gibbs and Madlib features guest appearances from Anderson .Paak, Yasiin Bey, Black Thought, Killer Mike, and Pusha T.
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 22
  2. Negative: 0 out of 22
  1. Jun 28, 2019
    100
    The supporting cast also includes Anderson .Paak, Pusha T and Killer Mike, all of whom give impressive turns. But Gibbs is the star and, behind the boards, Madlib guides him like a skilled director. The result is an album of unvarnished realities transmuting into cinematic excellence.
  2. 91
    From beginning to end, Bandana is a perfectly-paced album. Madlib never lingers on a single musical idea as he chops samples and switches beats, often midway through songs. Meanwhile, Gibbs, an expert in flows and rhythms, glues each song together with his undaunted, straightforward performances, which offer an illusion of effortlessness.
  3. Jun 28, 2019
    90
    Bandana also stands on its own as one of the very best rap albums of 2019, or any other year in recent memory.
  4. Jun 28, 2019
    80
    Bandana isn’t a sequel so much as another helping of what worked so well the first time: a selection of Madlib’s finest beats, cave-aged and peppered with the same Gibbsian blend of lighthearted flexing and street philosophy. It’s a more refined take on a proven formula, with sterling track after sterling track cementing Gibbs and Madlib as a remarkably effective duo.
  5. 80
    Silly mortals. This is Madlib, lord of the freaky loop, who in collaboration with Gibbs across this album proves he can sketch out a classic rhythm with the minimalist precision of Picasso drawing a butt. For his part, Gibbs is an unapologetic street rapper who cusses his way through verses with glee, tossing f-bombs as he relays couplets.
  6. Jul 8, 2019
    80
    Bandana is one of the most satisfying rap records I’ve heard so far in 2019.
  7. 40
    On this sequel, Gibbs mostly sounds bored, aggressively bored or boringly aggressive. The ever creative Madlib chucks in everything he can find to dazzle the listener. When this coheres--in the vicious swamp-beat of Massage Seats, for example--it’s sensational. Often his work sounds too dense to compete with mass-market trap, and struggles to support Gibbs’s gruff rhymes.

See all 22 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 23
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 23
  3. Negative: 1 out of 23
  1. Jun 29, 2019
    10
    Beats/bars/features are all impeccable. Such a fantastic follow up to pinata and definitely worth the wait
  2. Jun 28, 2019
    10
    Album of the Year. Awesome songs, no flaws. Beat Konducta and Gangsta Gibbs did it again after Pinata.
  3. Jul 11, 2019
    10
    The album is exactly what I expected from this two amazing artists. The beats are crazy, the flow is on point.
  4. Jul 1, 2019
    10
    Great beats, Gangsta Gibbs at his lyrical peak, spitting graphic ryhmes that evoke raw street imagery, and Madlib setting a vibe worthy of theGreat beats, Gangsta Gibbs at his lyrical peak, spitting graphic ryhmes that evoke raw street imagery, and Madlib setting a vibe worthy of the hiphop gods. Album of the year? I wouldn't bet against it Expand
  5. Jun 28, 2019
    10
    Instant classic!!!
    Monumental and amazing work!!!
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    Instant classic!!!
    Monumental and amazing work!!!

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  6. Jun 29, 2019
    9
    Over 5 years after the release of their last collaborative album 'Piñata', MadGibbs are back at it again, creating what seems to be aOver 5 years after the release of their last collaborative album 'Piñata', MadGibbs are back at it again, creating what seems to be a masterpiece.

    The opening lines of the first real track 'Freestyle S**t' go: Warning: the surgeon general has determined that the sounds you are about to hear, will always be devastating to your ear, sleep well. This warning could not have been more true. The album is a cinematic story about life on the streets, told with incredible lyricism, infused with experimental soul production, along with a few skits in-between tracks. On 'Piñata', it seemed that Gibbs and Madlib were still coming to terms with each others styles, with a few things on the album sounding a little rough around the edges, even though it was still a great body of work. Those few inconsistencies have been well and truly figured out on this record.

    To me it sounds like two greats of hip-hop at the height of their powers, coming together to tell some incredible stories, sounding like Madlib's best work since Madvillainy, and Freddie Gibbs' best work ever. This is probably Gibbs' best lyrical work too, with every single bar being spat with incredible technical skill and lyricism. Other great lyricists such as Pusha T, Killer Mike Yesin Bey and Black Thought appear on this album, but Gibbs manages to hold his own, never sounding second best, even among some of hip-hops lyrical goliaths. Because of the sheer quality of Gibbs' performance, I felt immersed in the street stories he was telling, which added to the cinematic greatness of the record. Madlib complements this almost perfectly, as he mixes 1970's soul into the production to help add to the gritty kind of realism that Gibbs manages to bring.

    Gibbs manages to bring authenticity and realism to the album, sounding like a man who has seen far too much. This is shown in moments such as when he raps: Every-time I sleep, dead faces, they occupy my brain which shows that Gibbs still sees his dead friends or enemies whenever he sleeps, constantly haunting his conscious. The realism is shown in other moments too, such as when he raps about using a bandana to wipe fingerprints off of a murder weapon. In terms of technical rapping skill, it is one of my favourite albums in recent memory, due to the performances of Gibbs and the supporting cast, with Madlib directing these stars like the genius producer he is.

    Madlib's beats create a backdrop to the story that Gibbs is telling, never being too much or to little, infusing samples like someone who is a master at their craft. This album is perfect for people who want to hear traditional hip-hop, telling some of the best stories I can think of. I loved this album from start to finish, with it being consistently great throughout, giving Tyler, The Creators 'IGOR' a lot of competition for my current album of the year, and it is my favourite rap album so far too.

    Favourite Songs: Flat Tummy Tea, Cataracts, Palmolive

    Score: 9.1/10
    Expand
  7. Jul 1, 2019
    0
    Quite dispointed. I was expecting something better by looking at the critics. I actually don't understand the rates so far.

See all 23 User Reviews

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