by Kaitlyn Clarke
Mykki is the long anticipated debut studio album of genderqueer experimental hip-hop artist Mykki Blanco; it is a fresh, exciting, subversive album that redefines what femininity means in a predominately male genre, and it gives representation to the LGBTQIA+ community. Produced by director and singer-songwriter Woodkid, along with Jeremiah Meece, the album features 13 tracks of genre-bending and deeply personal music. Before beginning a career in music, Mykki wrote and published poetry, some of which appears on the album. “Interlude 2” features a stark and industrial soundscape layered with a reading of a poem about the desire for love and intimacy that ties in the themes of self-love and acceptance.
The album as a whole maintains a euphonious continuity while allowing each song to develop a distinctive sound. Considered her most accessible work to date, Mykki includes lush melodic pop melodies, like in “Highschool Never Ends” (Feat. Woodkid) and “Loner” (Feat. Jean Deaux), as well as forceful and driving beats influenced by classic hip-hop, revealing some of the Southern rap influences that stem from her upbringing in North Carolina. The track “Fendi Band” perfectly demonstrates this abrasive nature and showcases the punk sensibilities that distinguish Mykki’s sound from her contemporaries. The final song off Mykki, and one of my personal favorites, is “Rock N Roll Dough,” a severe yet engaging anthem about Mykki’s experiences being in the underground art scene in New York.
Long time listeners and new fans alike will be enthralled with the exuberant confidence and poignant vulnerability that Mykki presents to the world in what is hopefully the first of many groundbreaking studio albums.