Trip: A Review

 

Late last September rising R&B singer, Jhené Aiko, released her fifth studio project titled, “Trip” and that’s right, you’ve guessed it! The overall theme is centered around psychedelic side effects resulting from her interactions with various foreign substances. Now I must disclaim that I do not condone the use of these commodities, but the parallelism of her “trips” and significant events from her past create an interesting story told throughout this work.

 

The album begins with a song called “LSD” which signifies the use of that specific hallucinogen. Like various other songs on this album, this introduction focuses on a very impacting event on her life. It was the death of her brother and others are about falling in love, becoming a mother and more. We also can see how her imagination occasionally romanticizes tragic events when being under an influence. Like with this song she says, “How you like it up there, what’s your view from there, I bet its so cool to jet across the moon, that’s how I picture you in my head..” On the other hand songs like “Bad Trip,” show how her thoughts can do the exact opposite and cause her to experience unpleasant feelings of fear and superstition. The ending of this song is filled with her screaming “I thought you loved me, you told me you loved me, you liar, liar, I hate you!” pointing towards her doubts and uncertainties.

There are points of the album that highlight her positive emotions like with the songs, “While We’re Young,” “Moments,” and “Only Lovers Left Alive”. These songs talk about the blissful feelings of new found love and relying on it to prevail. The album then takes a turn when she is brought down by sativa and goes through a pessimistic state. One of her songs “New Balance,” talks about the emptiness of life and how all they have is each other. Some lyrics are, “Most of us are hurting, most of us are searching for someone to love, someone to understand.” A song called “Nobody” focuses on an opposing perspective as she now believes that she does not need anyone. This subsequently subjects her to self medicate with foreign substances again. Some of the lyrics go, “take this, wait for the 2008 summer, Imma be a mother, wow, take this, 2012 summer, it just got tougher, I don’t have my brother now…” The album then goes into a period where she no longer wants to exist and wants to “go back to no one” and nothing. After this she experiments with another substance which lifts her spirits from her depressed stage. This leads into a song featuring her daughter called “Sing to Me,” a duet between her and her child singing “I love you” back and fourth to each other and other sweet sayings. The album ends with her wishing for the younger generation to be steered in the right direction towards salvation and away from the path she previously chose.

The album itself is unique in the sense of her telling her journey from various intoxicated states of mind. It is evident of how she felt during these times and how her thought process was affected as a result. We follow through her life and see her transform from being a hurting person into a mother who wishes nothing but the best for the next generation after her. Through it she learns that “self medication” is not the solution and that is the most important message I took away from this masterpiece. Copping mechanisms are only temporary and do not solve your chronic issues. True salvation comes by-way of more valuable things and for Jhené Aiko, it was by-way of her daughter. So what will your “trip” to salvation be like?

Track List:

“LSD”

“Jukai”

“While We’re Young”

“Moments”

“OLLA”

“When We Love”

“Sativa”

“New Balance”

“New Balance (Freesytle)”

“You Are Here”

“Never Call Me”

“Nobody”

“Overstimulated”

“Bad Trip”

“Oblivion”

“Psilocybin”

“Mystic Journey”

“Picture Perfect”

“Sing to Me”

“Frequency”

“Ascension”

“Trip”

 

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