Picture it. It’s 2008, and shit is changing. The American financial market is plummeting, a black man is running for president and actually has a chance this time, NASA finally lands a rocket on the polar side of Mars. And then through all of that, after 4 years NERD announced that they were releasing another album. Seeing Sounds. One of the greatest albums ever made. To put it into perspective, I was seven when this album came out. I didn’t care about anything except my PS2 and colored pencils, and this album made me fully not care about either of those. I can talk about this album forever, but I’ll condense my love for a couple paragraphs.
So, being seven my ear for music was based on what everyone in my house played. So when it came to me finding my own taste the only way I could expand was through video games. Then we got NBA Live 09 and we played the shit out of it. I would always go to the soundtrack and tweak it to only the songs that caught my attention, there were two songs on there that fucked me up. Day N’ Nite by Cudi and Spaz by NERD. I had never heard anything like it. The way that the beat repeated itself four times before the beat started, how hard those drums hit, when the beat dropped and those guitars come in my fucking head exploded. It would be days where I would put the game on and just listen to the song on repeat because it was a outlet to let out the immense amount of energy. Then that fucking bridge comes in and you just float. Such a contrast from the rest of the song, but it fits perfectly.
The rest of the album is just as good. You’re getting the funk that you’re used to with a NERD project with a new spin put onto it. Because this album sounds nothing like Fly Or Die which was the most funk-rock album in their discography. Pharrell said this album was made to see the crowd react and when you listen to it you can hear it. Especially on songs like Sooner or Later, Happy, Love Bomb too. Sooner Or Later is definitely the best song on the album just for that guitar solo at the end. In this song they go from light-hearted singing about the financial market to Pharrell just straight hollering, and I love it so much. Every time you listen to it you can catch different elements. Listen to how the cymbals sound strong one time and it sounds like they almost fall off the stands, Listen to how the bass is making itself heard amidst all the chaos, the piano tries to be the calm within the storm, but is ultimately flushed out by everything else. It creates a perfect combination of noise that holds up eleven years later.
When I tell you this NERD’s best album I’m not lying. I can run this shit back over and over. Also, listen to Lazer Gun and listen to how fire Shae’s verse is. God, we gotta give Shae his roses for being a good rapper because people like to overlook him for some reason. This is the album that featured the least out of Shae too, which sucks because when he adds to a track it’s always memorable. Like, his verse on Kill Joy is so much fun to yell. Even though that track makes no fucking sense. Read the lyrics and try to grasp anything from it. It’s still fire though. The bridge on You Know What is godly. There was a page on soundcloud that just had it on loop but I guess it got deleted. God, this album is so good. Just listen to it.
Listen to Seeing Sounds Here
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