Part of blackbear’s initial appeal was his nihilistic storytelling, which stimulated pleasure centers, unleashing a torrent of endorphins on albums like 2015's Help and 2017's digital druglord. But after too many hungover mornings and walks of shame, the nocturnal R&B singer-songwriter realized a change was in order. He documents that path on ANONYMOUS. “It’s about a time where I was struggling to stop doing drugs and I was struggling to stop messing around with so many girls and be a better, healthier person,” he told Beats 1’s Zane Lowe.
blackbear pulls the mask off, revealing the vulnerable human behind the front. “SWEAR TO GOD,” “ITS ALL GONNA BURN,” and “MAKE A MESS” are intense dissections of life and lessons learned. He allows himself room to vent and heal on “HEARTBROKEN” and “LOSING YOU,” all the while giving listeners the deeply felt, spacey R&B blackbear excels at—it’s just coming from a more conscious place.
“I feel very confident, for the first time in my life, that this album will speak to people on a deeper level,” blackbear said. “It's a whole album about growing up and, kind of, 'adulting.' I ordered a decaf coffee the other night, and I was like, ‘Holy crap, I'm an adult.’”