From Nothing to Something: Our Review on DaBaby’s, “KIRK”

From throwing fake cannabis into crowds and stirring utter controversy to now having his first No. 1 album in the country, Charlotte’s own, DaBaby has literally taken over as what seems overnight. From hopping on tracks with the likes of Lizzo, Post Malone, Lil Nas X, and even Chance the Rapper, Baby has been HARD at work. While it has been a month since the release of his debut album, “KIRK,” DaBaby continues to do numbers, sell out shows and make impact in the Hip Hop realm.

Consisting of 13 songs, KIRK follows Baby’s Baby On Baby project released in March. The album contains features from popular Hip Hop stars such as: Nicki Minaj, Moneybagg Yo, Lil Baby, Migos, Chance the Rapper and more.

KIRK is noticeably different as it contains a more serious depth and deeper level of growth. Beginning with “”INTRO,” Baby reveals that at the height of his career, as his top single (you know) “Suge” hit No. 1 on Billboard, he also sadly learned about the sudden tragic passing of his father. Listeners get to witness more emotion and vulnerability from the rapper as he raps about his past, coming from absolutely nothing and now being hugely successful and wealthy.

“Same time I got the news, my sh*t went number one, that’s f*cked up
That sh*t there was confusin’, a lil’ bit, you know I flew in with the stick”

Unlike many rappers, DaBaby is very unorthodox in his rapping. With much high energy and persistent delivery, Baby skips the traditional flow of rap and creates a lane strictly for himself. “OFF THE RIP” channels trademark Baby from production to the Speedy Gonzales delivery. Baby says exactly what he wants to say, exactly how he wants to say. In one moment, he raps about eating with his family, his wealth and in the next he channels this chaotic fiery passion as he raps about aggressively handling all of the clowns in the streets.

DaBaby carries himself with a level of confidence that can intimidate others. He is very self aware and he knows he is hot right now. “BOP” showcases a cockier side of Baby. He knows he is different and he has no problem with it. Interpolating his “Goin Baby,” DaBaby creates a new yet familiar vibe. He is completely unapologetic in his execution. He reflects on his success, investing, taking care of his family, and his various encounters with the women.

“Probably won’t hear me open my mouth ‘less you hearin’ me talkin’ ’bout finding some money (Let’s go)
As soon as I found it, I flipped that (Flip)
I’m a little bit different, they get it (They dig)”

Both “VIBEZ” & “POP STAR” bring out more of that Baby we have grown to love as he continues to make it known that regardless of the money continuing to pile up, shows selling out and the people and places he encounters, he is still that North Carolina boy that is not to be played with. He makes it clear that the money and the fame will never change his vibe or his authenticity. He lives exactly the life he leads and it is not to be taken for granted.

Cuts such as the Nicki Minaj-assisted, “iPHONE,” and the feature heavy “GOSPEL” provide memorable moments on the album. These two specifically have “anthem” vibes associated with them. “GOSPEL” reflects again on Baby’s loss of his father, while Gucci, YK Osiris and Chance the Rapper reflect on dealing with snakes who have betrayed them and looking at life from their shoes. “iPHONE” is softer but contagious. Ironically, Nicki and DaBaby go back and forth as they flow about dealing with their side pieces and the various challenges.

One of my favorite tracks is the Lil Baby and Moneybagg Yo-assisted, “TOES.” The production alone is enough to make you pull out your meanest stink face. DaBaby, Lil Baby and Moneybagg Yo get gritty and braggadocios on the song and it’s great. As the song continues, the trio look back on being at the bottom, but now being comfortable and established.

Of course there cannot be a Baby project without a Stunna collaboration. The chemistry between the two is untouchable and “REALLY” is most certainly a banger. The two bounce off each other flawlessly flowing about their lifestyles, rap ability and of course… the ladies. The last few tracks end the album on a very good note. “PROLLY HEARD,” “RAW S**T,” & the notorious “XXL” freestyle bring out the explosive side of Baby.

While KIRK may not be the greatest project, it definitely offers some noteworthy tracks. It is a decent stepping stone to truly begin Baby’s legacy and sets a standard for future works. Along with the humorous antics and lines, Baby truly tells a story with his pen and creates visuals that are both entertaining and engaging. The songs make you want to move.

From the music, to his personality, funny Triller videos and more, the world loves the 27 year-old North Carolina native. His energy is raw. He blends all things ratchet, yet sophisticated and creates a completely different lane for himself. He is unapologetic. Like a bomb he simply detonates on pretty much any and every track he raps on. He lives in his truth and it clearly has blessed him. DaBaby is here and here to stay.

Favorite Tracks from “KIRK”:

  1. VIBEZ
  2. BOP
  4. TOES
  5. RAW SH*T