Album Review \\ NxWorries – Yes Lawd! Remixes

The latest happenings from musical power duo Anderson .Paak and Knxwledge consist of a remixed and reimagined version of their debut album. It is their second release for LA-based Stones Throw Records and a treat for fans of the pair. Knxwledge’s remix game is strong, having stated himself in an interview with The FADER that he’s probably made more remixes than recorded with actual artists. Entitled Yes Lawd! Remixes, this album is a fresh take on the 2016 original, and displays the depth of Knxwledge’s production mastery as well as a more full-on experience of Paak’s lush vocal talents.

The original record, Yes Lawd!, brings to mind palm tree-lined avenues and sunshine: LA, where Knxwledge is based, ‘the city of flawless women’, as Paak sings in Livvin. The original versions of numbers like Suede and Livvin are optimistic, with clean-cut drum beats and euphoric harmonic progressions. This remixed record offers a different angle, though, a darker edge to all the glamour.

In Livvin, Paak’s voice echoes with reverb against a wash of gospel-like backing vocals and reharmonized instrumentals. The song ends with a sampled voice emerging and stating, “Ladies and Gentlemen. This is me expressing my loneliness.” Suede has also transformed; the lyrics are in double-time against a slowly grooving guitar loop and distorted electric piano chords. The form is choppier, with the music breaking clean away at points to give space to Paak’s whoops and shouts. Paak’s smooth lyrics remain but tracks like H.A.N are given new meaning under weightier instrumentals and spaced-out synths.

The Remixes ultimately promises a revamped insight into the inner workings of Anderson Paak and Knxwledge’s mind, and a further guide to the weird blend of church, money, and California living that Knxworries belong to.

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Gail Tasker | EZH Mag