We put Vince Staples’ debut double album all the way up at No. 12 on our 50 Best Albums Of 2015 So Far list, and with good reason. Here’s what Gabriela had to say about it:
“In gang culture, the summer is when people start dying.” That’s what Vince Staples said about the title of his debut full-length, and so, Summertime ‘06commences with the harmonious noise of seagulls and lapping waves before a gun shot paralyzes the sounds of typified American leisure. This double album is as big of a statement as a debut can be, as much an homage to Staples’ hometown as it is a critique of inequity. Long Beach natives sling dope before turning around to ask why the fuck they should have to, and repurposed chants of “Hands up, don’t shoot” echo when Staples wonders, “Do doves cry when a black man die?” Staples was 13 during that formative summer of ’06, and now he’s a 21-year-old rapper poised for greatness. But it’s blistering this time of year where he comes from, and there’s still no shade to shelter.
Now, Summertime ’06 is streaming in its entirety via NPR for all to hear — you should do so immediately, and check out our interview with Staples while you’re at it. Listen below.
Summertime ’06 is out 6/30 via Def Jam.