Cut Through the Noise: Kendrick Lamar, HUNNY, Bad Bunny

Elena Ortiz-Fishman

Illustration by Isaac Wert

Welcome to “Cut Through the Noise,” an entertainment column from the St. Louis Park Echo covering new music releases. Every week, a different Echo staffer takes on the role of writer, reviewing recent single releases from a variety of artists.

Kendrick Lamar — ‘The Heart Part 5’ ★★★★☆

Fair use from Aftermath/Interscope Records

Sampling Marvin Gaye, Kendrick Lamar’s newest song exemplifies his consistent, powerful wordplay. His lyricism has always been off the charts, creating songs with lines that you just want to read — and dissect — over and over. The song is building up the hype for his newest album, as it contains many small easter eggs. In the brief music video, Lamar embodies six different celebrities as their faces are superimposed on to his, showing: Kanye, O.J. Simpson, Will Smith, Kobe, Nipsey Hussle and Jussie Smollet. These personas are then  demonstrated in the six hands (representing the perspectives he portrays) on the cover art. Each hand is cut out from real pictures from the various celebrities, which is such a cool touch. As for the song, although the lyrics and video were memorable, you can tell it was intended as a teaser for what’s to come. It was well executed, but the album will be better — I am so excited to see what he continues to do in the future, the vision is forming and I’m ready. 

HUNNY — ‘Speed Dial’ ★★★☆☆

Fair use from Epitaph

While the song was good, I didn’t find it to be anything special. Teasing the newest release of “Speed Dial,” HUNNY has been incredibly evasive and secretive about their upcoming single. Finally, it was released along with the announcement for the bands next EP, “Homesick.” The song has repetitive lyrics, though they aren’t incredibly noteworthy. Despite the bland, overused lyrics — proving their music isn’t always the most inspired — HUNNY consistently creates songs that play over-and-over. They’ve always delivered earworms that are constantly stuck in your head, and this song was no different. But, compared to their other songs, the only flaw was that it didn’t offer anything new. I like HUNNY, but I wish it could move on past the stereotypical guy-obsessed-with-a-girl trope. Though this review sounds entirely negative, not all songs need to have profound, interesting lines. Sometimes, it’s enough to just have a catchy beat and cool guitar riffs to buoy you along. 

Bad Bunny — ‘Moscow Mule’ ★★★★★

Fair use from Rimas Entertainment

As summer nears, so does my ever-elusive Bad Bunny era. For his newest album, “Un Verano Sin Ti,” he has introduced an epic anthem for this upcoming summer. Lowkey and groovy, the track delivers all the key aspects I look for in an upbeat tune. Never failing to set the mood, “Moscow Mule” fits exactly what I am looking forward to as the days grow warmer. Although some complain that the track was slightly less high energy than his other releases, I disagree with the criticism. The classic Bad Bunny spark is blatantly present — his energy remains infectious despite the different tone. Instead of being more pop-esque, the song was introduced in a slightly different tenor, to perpetuate the new concept for his album. Bad Bunny has been the epitome of reggaeton, bringing the specific genre of music to a broader audience. This newfound concept of the song exudes a beachy, carefree attitude full of beach balls and sunny, sand-filled days.