Yesterday was a complicated day for a lot of us. The Fourth of July is supposed to be a celebration of America, but it’s hard to feel too celebratory when your country is, politically and economically, on a truly fucked-up path. Can you really feel proud of a country when that country is keeping immigrant kids in tent prisons? When your country is doing things so morally indefensible that you never thought you’d live to see them? I still drank beer and watched fireworks yesterday, but it didn’t feel the way it’s supposed to feel.
As a gay black man in America, you might expect the Atlanta sing-rapper iLoveMakonnen to feel at least as conflicted. But yesterday, Makonnen released a new EP called simply iLoveAmerica. Its cover is an image of fireworks exploding. There are no political statements on the EP, or statements about America. The music is pretty much just party music. But there’s something just slightly inspirational about the idea of embracing your country even through all the bullshit — what it’s supposed to represent rather than what it’s actually doing. Or maybe Makonnen just isn’t thinking that seriously about all that.
In any case, iLoveAmerica is four songs of gentle, insinuating trap music. Fellow Atlanta rapper Key! shows up on one song. It’s not bad! Listen below.
There’s no download info for iLoveAmerica; it seems to just live on SoundCloud.