Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Sudan Archives: Natural Brown Prom Queen [Stones Throw, 2022]
Cincinnati native turned Black L.A. ethnomusicologist Brittney Parks had the extra sass to send this impressively pancultural array of Afrocentric tracks she'd created to an array of producers and then sequencing whatever combinations struck her ear and fancy into an atmospheric whole. Lyrics are sometimes collegial and sometimes gangsta, sometimes romantic and sometimes domestic, sometimes metaphysical and sometimes sexual, sometimes civilized and sometimes grotty. They leave open such questions as what exactly happened in Amsterdam and the likely intentions of her roughneck cousin in Chicago. The whole sounds pretty great and also pretty atmospheric. What it all means remains to be determined, which isn't to lay any bets that that consummation will ever be reached. A-