De La Soul’s glorious comeback album “And the Anonymous Nobody” (AOI) is a triumph on so many levels — from its roots on Kickstarter, where the Amityville natives quickly raised more than $600,000, to its elaborately planned and executed lyrical journey.
The trio’s first album in 12 years is packed with friends and collaborators — including Gorillaz frontman Damon Albarn, Usher, David Byrne, Snoop Dogg, Estelle and Jill Scott. But the real stars are still Pos, Dave and Maseo, whose vision for the album is as ambitious as they come.
Starting with “Genesis,” where Scott talks about how love is most needed “when nobody cares,” and ending with the stunning “Exodus,” which talks about the importance of creating beauty, De La Soul sets out to show once again how positivity can affect the world just as they did on the landmark hip-hop album “3 Feet High and Rising.”
On “Here in After,” they try to collapse it into one song, which shows a life of struggle, backed with edgy beats and rapid-fire rhymes, that flows into seemingly heavenly bliss voiced by Albarn.
“Saviors, heroes? Nah,” they say to close the album. “Just common contributors hopin’ that what we created inspires you to selflessly challenge and contribute sincerely, anonymously, noble.”