In August, Brockhampton’s new album Ginger finally dropped. It’s their fifth album and has twelve tracks with music videos for four of those coming out on the lead up to the album’s release. Not only hearing but being able to see I Been Born Again, If You Pray Right, Boy Bye, and No Halo was really the perfect build up. Each of those songs are fantastic and not only was it a glimpse into how Ginger sounds but also the aesthetic and vibe that would be expected of their music videos which are often just as iconic as the songs themselves.
This album is somehow entirely different to anything else they’ve done while also still feeling like the Brockhampton we all know and love. Each member (and those who feature on it) bring their own unique style to it and between the vocals and the instruments Ginger is just as satisfying as any of their previous work. How it’s all mixed together and presented to us shows not only their talent but how far they’ve come.
Ginger is just as good as their previous albums but in a lot of ways, it’s even better. You can definitely hear and see the skills of every member while also getting this sense of experimentation. Somehow the album feels simultaneously like a warm hug (the familiarity of a Brockhampton album and/or record) while also feeling like something entirely different. It doesn’t feel like a complete departure from what they’ve done in the past but it does feel like an obvious step forward. Having listened to the album more than a few times since it’s release, it just seems like a natural progression. An upgrade so to speak. This is their fifth album and while the Saturation albums are often treated like a collective, that’s still a lot of music under their belt so it makes sense that there would be a shift.
It’s also so easy to feel the heart within Ginger. That’s not to say that they didn’t care about their past music. It’s very clear that Brockhampton put a ton of effort into what they do and then some but in a lot of ways, Ginger really felt like they were pouring their hearts out and putting more in than they ever have before. And, as I said before, you definitely get the sense that they’re trying new things. There are also some featured voices on the album as well and even with that expansion, Ginger still feels as intimate as all of their other work, perhaps more so. It pulls you in and practically demands your full attention and really, it isn’t hard to give.
All that being said, I get why the album might take a few listens to warm up to. I’ll admit, I liked some tracks more than others at first and it took me a minute to really appreciate them all but I’m sure a few more listens (at least) will have me obsessing over each track equally. Although, I will say that my favourites at the moment are definitely No Halo, Sugar, Boy Bye, St Percy, and If You Pray Right. With these songs, I just completely latched on and fell in love with every second of each of one upon first hearing them. With the other tracks on the album, I did have to listen to them through a couple of times to fully appreciate every part of them. However, with the five I listed, I was head over heels by the time each song finished and I struggled to pick my favourite parts or choose one out of the five.
Ginger is definitely a complex album but at the end of the day, it still captivates the sheer brilliance, talent, and authenticity of Brockhampton. Throughout, you’ll hear how they take serious topics and somehow still manage to make tracks that are fun and energetic to listen to. It really emulates how the group are really good at not sacrificing each member’s individuality and atheistic while also knowing how to balance that so nothing ever outshines or takes away from the final result. It means that every track (and therefore Ginger as a whole) is very unique but also well oiled and put together. And this time around, that open and honest and raw voice is even more prominent and believable.
Is the album perfect? I honestly don’t know but I will say that if you’re already a fan of Brockhampton, you’ll definitely see their progression and it’s a must to check out. And if you’re not a fan, it’s still worth checking out but be sure to listen to the rest of their music to get a full sense of who they are and just how much they’ve grown.