Nipsey Hussle's "Victory Lap" is a story, and should be listened to like the albums of old.
The album as we know it may be endangered. More and more new artists are neglecting the scope of a cohesive project, unified both musically and thematically. Instead, they seem to favor the brevity of a single, which can be released into the wild with no strings attached. The embracing of the single seems a uniquely hip-hop phenomenon; more lyrical styles of rock like indie or folk tend to make effective use of the album's inherent narrative arc, and many fans still view the album as an ideal listening experience. However, for many emerging hip-hop artists, the single seems to have taken charge. Some, however, still understand the importance of a cohesive vision.
Nipsey Hussle's upcoming Victory Lap seems meant to be played from front to back. "As I listen back to it, the topics is real consistent bro," says Nipsey, during an interview with Rap-Up. "It's almost like one topic that I sliced up into sixteen different takes. It's the story of Nipsey Hussle." He goes on to cite the juxtaposition within his own upbringing, surrounded by gang-bangers and books alike; while his environment was occasionally mired in violence, his family life encouraged the pursuit of knowledge and education. "It’s an interesting take on South Central," he affirms, to put it lightly.
While Nipsey's Victory Lap is mere days away, perhaps its time to acquaint yourself with one of the recent singles. If so, "Dedication" with Kendrick Lamar is the latest to arrive. However, if you're interested in seeing the story unfold the way the author intended, wait a little bit longer, and let it play unimpeded.