Harlan & Alondra

Harlan & Alondra

The Buddy of Harlan & Alondra is a far cry from the Billionaire Boys Club-dipped teenager who sat beside Pharrell and rapped excitedly from a suburban rooftop in the video for his 2011 single “Awesome Awesome.” Where there was once skittering Neptunes production—which Buddy tackled with confidence beyond his years—there are now deeply funky basslines and a flow that lends itself to Nate Dogg-like harmonizing as much as it does the battle-ready bars of his past. The album is a glimpse into the artist’s life as it has unfolded since his debut, the Compton native taking great pride in his ability to navigate L.A.’s tiered social landscape (“Trouble on Central”) while bristling at the memory of selling weed to famous friends while living in an $800-a-month apartment (“Shameless”). Guests include A$AP Ferg, Ty Dolla $ign, and the perennial SoCal cosign—Snoop Dogg—who appears amid vocoder-ed background vocals on the boogie-referencing “The Blue.”

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