Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

Bktherula: Nirvana [Warner, 2020]
I know comparing this to Hassell and Eno's Fourth World Vol. 1 is too personal and obscure. But an environmental album I find both irresistible and inexplicable deserves nothing less. On the major-label follow-up to this Atlanta teen's viral trap sensation "Tweakin' Together," one of those fly-by-night hip-hop hits so vague you could sometimes forget they exist before they're over, she and her man Digital Nas string 11 tracks into a seductive half hour of what I guess counts as tweakin' together, its occasional sexy parts obscured in a haze of shrooms, lean, and percoset that's as foreign to me as the Sturgis Rally. But just as I've never tired of Hassell and Eno's "anthropological minimalism" and "ambient esoteric kitsch," to quote my review of four decades ago, the artist born Brooklyn Rodriguez's druggy dreams of "Left my soul when I died but my energy came right back" and "This shirt cost two bucks but I'm too fly for this shit" have atmospheric staying power. And she's clear as a bell about one thing, mentions it more than once just to make sure: "It's 50 for a show, 50 for a show yeah." Fifty grand, she means. A-