Kevin Abstract‘s ambitious new album, MTV1987, is a product of the times. The fast-rising, 17-year-old artist feels—like so many of us—trapped in the internet and is astutely aware of the implications. In a letter he posted to Twitter last night, he posed an important question to readers followed by a poignant observation:
“What’s worse? To be lame on the internet or to be lame in real life? I really don’t know anymore. I know how you feel. I know how you feel when you’re scrolling over and over. MTV1987 is that shit. We’re all depressed for no fucking reason. We’re all so connected yet so disconnected.”
Though it doesn’t necessarily contain the answers, MTV1987—produced entirely by fellow Alive Since Forever representative Romil—is Kevin’s best response to everything penned in that letter. It’s an exciting, 12-track musical journey examining the nature of the internet generation’s youth and bringing to light issues ranging from family troubles to the prevalence of drugs to an alarming lack of trust in relationships—and all things in between. The tone ranges from exceptionally warm to aggressive and near-hopeless, a juxtaposition that was previewed by the album’s well-received lead single, “DRUGS” and amplified here.
Kevin cites Kid Cudi and Frank Ocean as inspirations, and while both of their respective influences are decipherable throughout MTV1987, the project remains uniquely his own. The Texas-born rapper’s voice is consistent from start to finish, the production is cohesive, the themes are relevant; it’s not difficult to see how MTV1987 could really catch on.
Stream in full below, and click here to download.