Dom Kennedy - Get Home Safely (Review)

Dom Kennedy - Get Home Safely

"Get Home Safely" is the second studio album by Los Angeles emcee Dom Kennedy. The album features guest appearances from Skeme, Krondon, Teeflii and Nipsey Hussle as well as production from The Futuristiks, DJ Khalil, DrewByrd and others. It was released on October 15, 2013 via The Other Peoples Money Company.

1) Letz Be Friends - The first song on the album has a smooth instrumental, provided by The Futuristiks, with some synths and what sounds like distorted horns over melodic bass. The beat is dope and Dom Kennedy sounds pretty good over it, rapping about a typical day in South Central, Los Angeles. Not a bad way to start the album.

2) 17 - The Futuristiks share production duties with Larrance on this song and come with a mellow instrumental that has some more ambient keyboards over deep bass drums. As on the previous song, the beat is smooth and Dom Kennedy comes correct over it, reminiscing about his life back when he was 17 years old.
"Back when I was 17, I had a notion
That I would see the whole world across the ocean
My dad be working hard, but he get no promotion
And he there every day, shit, that's devotion"
This is dope.

3) All Girl Crazy - This song has a bouncy instrumental, courtesy of The Futuristiks and Nick Brongers, with a lighthearted guitar loop over upbeat drums and backing vocals. As expected from the title of the song, Dom Kennedy just spits some verses about all the girls in his life. So far all of the songs on the album have been good, but not great. Hopefully it picks up soon.

4) After School - Now this is a little better. The beat, by The Futuristiks and Dammo, is lush, with trippy synths over stuttering hi-hats and booming bass. Dom comes through with some contemplative verses about getting into Heaven and hoping that its just like the good old days hanging out after school with his boy Nick. I'm feelin' this one. Dope.

5) If It Don't Make Money (featuring Skeme) - The Futuristiks and DJ Khalil join forces and deliver what is probably my favorite beat on the album so far. The instrumental is ill, with some spaced-out ambient keyboards and more deep bass, and both Dom Kennedy and guest Skeme rip it, rapping about their mission to stack paper. The subject matter is cliche, but the song is dope nonetheless. Very nice.

6) Honey Buns Interlude - Instrumental interlude.

7) Honey Buns (featuring Krondon) - The beat on this song, provided by The Futuristiks and YuYu, has a laid-back West Coast vibe to it with textured backing keyboards and rumbling conga drums. Both Dom Kennedy and Strong Arm Steady emcee Krondon sound ok on here, but I'm not really feelin' this compared to the rest of the songs on here. Next.

8) Erica Part 2 - The Futuristiks, DJ Khalil, Dave Foreman and Danny Keys all get production credits on this song, which has another other-wordly instrumental with breezy synths and ethereal guitars. The beat is dope as hell and Dom sounds really good over it, rapping about a honey named Erica that he hooked up with. Too bad this is so short since the last minute or so of the song is just a skit. Still, this is fire.

9) Black Bentleys - The beat on this song has yet another smooth synth instrumental, this time by The Futuristiks and DJ Khalil. All of the beats so far have been real mellow and have had a hazy, smoked-out vibe to them and this one is no different. Lyrically Dom Kennedy is on point and kicks some rhymes about his career thus far in the rap industry.
"Gave a lot of music out for free instead of being sold
But deep down in my little heart, man that shit is gold
Shot my videos with my cousin, man that shit was cold
Niggas couldn't tell me back then I wasn't Big or Hov
Now they make songs with no soul just to bathe in gold"

10) Tryna Find My Way - The Futuristiks come through with a slower instrumental with more keyboards and stomping drums. The beat is real mellow and Dom sings more than raps his verses, which are all written for a girl that he is diggin'. Eh, this is just ok for me.

11) A Intermission For Watts - Interlude.

12) South Central Love - This song has yet another The Futuristiks instrumental with trippy synths, soft backing vocals and pianos. The beat is pretty ill and Dom Kennedy sounds ok over it, kicking more rhymes about trying to find the right women. Not bad, I guess.

13) Dominic - This song is the first of a string of DrewByrd instrumentals and it's dope. The beat has a distorted backing vocal sample and soft keyboards over deep bass drums and Dom comes correct over it, rapping guessed it...females, drugs and money. Luckily the beats are ill because most of these lyrics are just rehashes of all the other songs.

14) Still Callin (featuring Teeflii) - This song features another smooth, keyboard-heavy DrewByrd instrumental that isn't quite as dope as the previous song. Lyrically its just more of the same as Dom Kennedy kicks some rhymes about women while Teeflii provides the chorus. Ehh.

15) Pleeze (featuring Nipsey Hussle) - This is a little better. DrewByrd returns with a darker synth string instrumental with a West Coast vibe over a hard-hitting snare drum. Dom Kennedy comes through with a story about trying to make it home through the rough streets of South Central, LA. Not bad, I guess.

16) The 5 Year Theory (Real Shit Last) - The final song on the album features a lively DJ Tech instrumental with some celebratory horns and whistles over soft drums. The beat is a welcome break from all of the trippy synth instrumentals so prevalent throughout the album and Dom is actually spitting quite well on here. The lyrics are more of the same, but his flow sounds more energetic and reinvigorated. Dope way to close out the album.

I'm going to rate the album

3 / 5

because it has some bright moments, but it also has some filler. The beats are pretty dope throughout, with most having a synth-heavy, spaced-out feel to them. Lyrically, Dom Kennedy isn't quite as strong, rapping about the same topics on mostly every song. A good portion of the album started to blend together for me since many of the beats sounded alike and because Dom rarely switched up his flow or subject matter. Still, the album is pretty dope in spots and doesn't have any tracks that are outright terrible. It's good background music, but not much more than that due to the lack of lyrical content.


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