Kid Sister’s debut album, Ultraviolet, finally came out yesterday after a couple years of hype. I need not get into the whole drama, cuz many others have already done so. The point is, 2 years ago we heard/were amused by the song “Pro Nails.” Kanye was slightly less ubiquitous then, so when he guested on that song, peeps’ ears perked up, and Kid Sister got a hometown boost from fellow Chicagoan Kanye.
I have just one thing to say to Ultraviolet‘s haters: this album should be heard in the context of what we hear on the radio. The production sounds like it cost about a million dollars more than any Jay Sean/Jason DeRulo/Treyz Songs/Drake/whoevs ’90sesque club single. Defmute asked me, all concerned, “Are there Chris Brown synths?” This means: “How generic and cheap does her production sound?” My answer: Not bad. Heard on hi-def headphones, the opening eurodisco stomp of “Right Hand Hi” sounds pretty darn expensive.
True, Ultraviolet is not in league with genre-bending high-minded pop, a la Kanye or M.I.A. But let’s not punish this album for what it never tried to be. This album is a cheerful throwback, all ’80s neon and Bassment Party rap reminiscent of last year’s big shit The Cool Kids. This album is a more successful Santigold, because I am certain that no one, other than the critics who ludicrously endorsed her, actually listened to that album. I think people will listen to and enjoy Kid Sister–she’s goofy, she’s pretty, she raps about Payless and Bath & Body works (that is to say, she is humble), and she has some good producers. This album also taught me a couple things about dance genres, and though the experts might scoff, dudes, I don’t know what kind of manic tom makes good juke, and if I hear some distortion that reminds me of MSTRKRFT, I will be happy. Hence Kid Sister sounds like fun dance music to me.
Not all songs are solid gold, but I would say that 50% of the album is great, including “Right Hand Hi,” “Life on TV,” “Control,” “Get Fresh,” and “Switch Board.”
So check it out and stop hatin. And for god’s sake, Pfork, don’t say Sister’s rhymes remind you of “actors in teen movies rapping for laughs.” Maybe it’s cuz you haven’t heard a woman rapping and having fun at the same time… like, ever.