Apollo XXI Review

Dean Mauck, Journalist

Compton California Native Steve Lacy a former member of the popular hip hop group “The Internet” released his first solo album Apollo XXI on May 24th 2019 at the age of 21. This album featured many other hit artists such as another Compton native “Kendrick Lamar”, Indie band “Blood Orange” Rock Indie band “Vampire Weekend”, The late “Mac Miller” and Soul music singer and songwriter “Solange”. The albums genre is Soul and R&B with a slightly absurd psychedelical twist to it. Although being a professional album Lacy sticks to his roots that he had placed formally with songs like “C u girl”, “Some” and his most famous song “Dark Red” to make it have that kind of DIY homemade sound to it. With the addition of Steve Lacy’s amazing but yet simple guitar playing on tracks like “playground” and “Love 2 Fast” he adds a rather hypnotizing way to keep you listening to the song. Lacy’s rather deep but soothing voice doesn’t flood your brain with music to much but keeps you in tune, making it very good study/vibe music. Lacy also uses many Lo-fi sounding beats.

This is Lacy’s first solo album away from The internet and suggesting that it is his first it makes it that much better. As many fans of Steve Lacy know he has been open about his sexuality of being Bisexual. In the song “Like me” he states that he “only feels energy/I see no gender” showing that he is one coming out as a solo artist but a Bisexual man. Although being from a place where Hip Hop and Rap are the main music forms(Compton) Lacy breaks from that by adding the sense that this is more indie based although having Kendrick Lamer on the album. From past albums with The Internet like “Ego Death”, “Hive Mind” and “Purple naked Ladys” he uses more of his guitar skills in songs and don’t get to hear much of his voice. So this album is a break through going into it with only him singing most of the time.

Although many music critics and music critiquing websites gave this album a low ranking score for how much they liked it that doesn’t make sense to me. Because according to Pitchfork.Com they gave it a 6.9 out of 10 due to it “poor mixing” and “low quality sound” which can be true but if you look back at Lacy’s past this is what he is basically known for.

In conclusion I would personally gave this album a 8.0 out of ten because of the creative thought that went into it and because it is a great first album.