SXSW Records


Troubadour (A&M/Octone)

Aside from Kirk Hammett's embarrassing contribution to the pop turd "If Rap Gets Jealous" and Adam Levine's cheese-balled "Bang Bang" play on the Pharcyde's "Passin' Me By," K'Naan's Troubadour, his second LP, pulls all that's right from Will.i.am's bag. The Toronto-by-way-of-Somalia rapper holds his own as a lyricist despite admitted shortcomings ("Probably get a Grammy without a grammar education, so fuck you school, and fuck you immigration"), "Fire in Freetown" more Wyclef Jean than Emmanuel Jal. He's also in the Fugees' league as a singer ("Take a Minute"). Across both mediums, K'Naan jots memoirs present and past, hip-hopping together a worldly sound ("Somalia") that takes from Somalian youth's apparent Big Four: Fela Kuti, Tupac, Marley, Lucky Dube. Like M.I.A.'s two CDs, Troubadour is Westernized but never compromises its heritage. "T.I.A." – This Is Africa. (Thu., Austin Music Hall, 8:20pm.)


Keep up with all our SXSW coverage at austinchronicle.com/sxsw. Sign up for our South-by-specific newsletter at austinchronicle.com/newsletters/ for news, reviews, and previews delivered to your inbox every day of the Fest. And for the latest Tweets, follow @ChronSXSW.

More K'Naan
ACL Live Shots
The Knux/K'Naan

Chase Hoffberger, Oct. 9, 2009

ACL Music Fest Friday Interviews
Music is his weapon

Thomas Fawcett, Oct. 2, 2009

More Music Reviews
Summer Jams Clearance Sale, Part 2
The Memphis Strange
Strange Seconds (Record Review)

Doug Freeman, Aug. 18, 2017

Summer Jams Clearance Sale, Part 2
Burial Wraith
Kneel to the Witches (Record Review)

Raoul Hernandez, Aug. 18, 2017

More by Chase Hoffberger
Combatting Overcrowding at the Austin Resource Center for the Homeless
Combatting Overcrowding at the Austin Resource Center for the Homeless
More cops, more lighting, more bathrooms, new food

Aug. 11, 2017

Louis Black Announces <i>Chronicle</i> Retirement
Louis Black Announces Chronicle Retirement
Co-founder and co-owner departs after 36 years at helm

Aug. 8, 2017



AC Daily, Events and Promotions, Luvdoc Answers

Breaking news, recommended events, and more

Official Chronicle events, promotions, and giveaways

Updates for SXSW 2017

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)