King Swag – “The Why Project” (Album Review)

King Swag is an upcoming rapper who has been building up a loyal fanbase since 2019. With singles like “Smoke” and “Forever King”, success has come fairly easy to this young MC. He’s just put out his debut album “The Why Project” on all streaming services. Will King Swag be able to hold his expectations and grow as an artist, or will his fans come to find his early success was just a fluke?

While turning anger and disgust with America’s current state into music has become increasingly played out and repetitive, King Swag does everything in his power to deliver one of the most exciting experiences within these guidelines. Setting the tone on “4th of Ju-Lie!”, Swag points out the false ideals America has been built on while also honoring fallen freedom fighters like Fredrick Douglas and Harriet Tubman. “Karen Be Tellin’” is a comedic yet potent anthem on the many people privileged and disconnected from what’s going on in the streets nationwide. “15 to Life” was a definite standout as its an intense telling of the police forces’ true intentions when arresting African Americans. Building on this song, “Why?” is a more passive attempt at trying to bridge the divide between Americans. As a whole, King Swag thought out and planned everything on this record thoroughly as its some of the most fleshed-out commentary I’ve heard in a while.

Behind the boards, the production works in an array of ways to enhance the overall experience. Before talking about the sound of any the tracks, I must mention the various skits and interludes which are used. Pulling raw clips from history, songs like “Outro” and “4th of Ju-Lie!” are strengthened by hearing freedom fighters and every day black peoples speeches and conversations from the prior century. The skits “Karen Gone Wild” and “Revenge on Karen” are funny in their ridiculousness, yet they reinforce the themes of racism and hatred that linger in our society today. On the musical side of things, there is so much to be enjoyed from. From “4th of Ju-Lie!” that samples and flips the national anthem all the way to the upbeat “Forever King”, each note is crafted to perfection. “Why?” contained my favorite instrumental on the entire album as it feels like something played by the legendary Roots crew. In summary, the record’s production pushes every theme and idea to the max.

In conclusion, “The Why Project” is a phenomenal album that all hip hop fans should check out. King Swag has a god-given ability to turn his complex wordplay into food for thought. There hasn’t been much better when it comes to politically aware projects, and speaks volumes in a year like this. If you’re like me and want to see what this talented rapper does next, be sure to follow @kingswagf on Instagram!

Rating: 9/10

Highlights: Lyricism, Production, Subject Matter