Kendrick Lamar is great. That’s not some novel observation or anything, but it’s one that comes to come with a lot of Mike Tyson-esque caveats — as in, yeah, but who among his contemporaries is skilled enough to push him to be better? Drake? Hypercompetent and safe, but better than folks give him credit for. J. Cole? Hypercompetent and self-important and boring. Big Sean? Stop it.
Anyway, Kendrick was on Colbert last night — as the show’s last-ever musical guest. (Sniff.) It was his first live performance of as-yet-untitled song off his forthcoming album. It’s got all of the elements of those Kendrick-y elements — that odd mix of melancholy and uplift, hood shit and poetic flourishes. Are you amped? I’m amped.