jaboukie Young-White recently announced his long-awaited debut album, All who can’t hear must feel, to be released this Friday via Interscope Records. With the album just days away, jaboukie shares one more song from the record with “26,” the forthcoming LP’s focus track. Following the album’s previously released “BBC,” “GONER” and “not_me_tho,” “26” is fleeting and braggadocious, a rap track built on the tension between a singsong chant and a maxed-out bassline so enormous and abrasive it could blow a set of car speakers.
jaboukie on “26: “I found myself incorporating the sonics of music that I grew up with feeling challenged and oftentimes alienated by, and recontextualizing those sonics in a way that gave me empowerment and made me feel closer and more accepted in those same soundscapes I grew up in. ‘26’ lyrically and flow-wise is a riff on Buju Banton’s Boom Bye Bye, a homophobic anthem that has been a blemish in the history of Dancehall music. Even though the song is 36 seconds, I think of it as packing a big punch like a shot of Wray & Nephew.”
jaboukie, a 28-year-old Chicago native, is best known as a stand-up comedian, but also for his TV writing (Big Mouth, American Vandal) his stint as a correspondent on The Daily Show, various acting roles (Black Mirror, C’mon C’mon, Rap Sh!t, Only Murders in the Building), and several Twitter suspensions following impersonations of CNN, Donald Trump, and the FBI. But after Interscope CEO John Janick heard some scrapped songs jaboukie had worked on for a project paying homage to the late Juice WRLD, and discovered that he’d banked dozens of demos he recorded at a home studio he built himself, Janick drew up a record deal.
The result is All who can’t hear must feel, an entirely self-produced record that pays homage to jaboukie’s Jamaican heritage and explores a jaw-dropping range of musical genres, from shoegaze to experimental/industrial hip-hop to slacker rock to hyperpop to drill and more. The album was mixed by Alex Tumay and Neal Pogue, studio engineered by Alex Poeppel, mastered by Mike Bozzi, with jaboukie performing almost every instrument, save the occasional assist from his brothers, Javeigh and Javaughn. “I probably could have pulled some weight and tried to convince a bunch of really cool people to work on the album,” he admits, “but I thought if I wanted to seriously do this music, I would rather fall flat on my face on my own than get a bunch of people to do it all for me. It meant a lot to me to be doing most, if not all, of the shit.”
This week will not only mark jaboukie’s debut album release, but also the announcement of his debut live music performances. Catch jaboukie performing his music for the first time ever, with some live comedy as well, this Fall in New York, Los Angeles, and his hometown of Chicago. Public on-sale begins this Friday at 10 am locally – get your tickets HERE.
Photo Courtesy: Tiffany Champion