III, PIRATES BLEND
BADBADNOTGOOD have certainly come a long way since 2011. While the band quickly made their name with reinterpretations of Gucci Mane and Waka Flocka Flame, they were easily destined for much greater things. Their earlier works prove BADBADNOTGOOD capable of operating beyond the space of jazz music, but successive follow-ups have established the band as an extremely capable trio, musically.
III finds BADBADNOTGOOD fitting comfortably into their own niche, fusing a lot of sounds together that wouldn’t be out of place on Illmatic or Endtroducing. It’s on tracks like “Kaleidoscope” where the band really shines, showing their prowess with adapting certain progressions which feel extremely familiar to late-‘90s hip hop before deconstructing the track to its basest parts. It’s usually here when BADBADNOTGOOD is at their best. It’s also, unfortunately, the band’s weakest aspect. Some may see BADBADNOTGOOD as having an over-reliance on covers and interpretations of popular songs. Some jazz fans looking for a more avant-garde presentation may also find the band underwhelming. Admittedly, there is a considerable dearth between some of the more notable jazz players and the musicianship on III. However, all things considered, III stands apart, treading where few would even attempt to tread and holding a lot of promise for a band who is well worth your time.
By Aaron J. Marko