Vulnerable yet edgy, this genre-hopping project has story-telling at its core...

GoldLink has always had a story to tell. Whether it was the portrayal of love and missteps that permeated ‘And After That, We Didn’t Talk’, or the love for his hometown of the DMV (DC, Maryland and Virginia) – which showed itself in the collaborations, sound, and lyricism on follow-up project ‘At What Cost’ – these stories manifest throughout each release. ‘Diaspora’ is no different.

GoldLink moulds his third LP into a manifesto about existing as a black man, and the freedom and beauty of his hue – both internal and external. Still very much in the realm of future-sounds and go-go inspired pallets, the act melds these foundations with a plethora of genres created by the African diaspora. ‘Yard’ for instance, heavily relies on dancehall and reggae as GoldLink and UK collective WSTRN offer the masses a catchy and authentic collaboration. Elsewhere, Wizkid departs from his mainstay of Afrobeats to aid GoldLink in a low-fi hip-hop production, ‘No Lie’.  

At its core, ‘Diaspora’ sees a louder and more confident artist both mark his territory but also reveal his commitment to creating a “movement” – as evidenced on ‘Coke White’. GoldLink refuses to be one-dimensional here, offering up his dynamic and improved flow, as well as the vulnerability and edgy appeal that bubbles up throughout this project.

8/10

Words: Nicolas-Tyrell

Dig it? Dig deeper: Duckwrth, Anderson .Paak, VanJess

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