November 16, 2016

Will Schube knows it’s a family affair.

Atlanta’s Donald Glover decided that being the creator of TV’s best new show isn’t enough. With the release of his latest track as Childish Gambino, “Me and Your Mama,” the 33-year-old comedian-turned-actor-turned rapper has re-defined his sound by moving away from rapping. Instead, he’s ditched any remaining haters by turning his focus towards more universal feeling of longing.

“Me and Your Mama” is a prog-based lovesick jam from space. Equal parts King Crimson, Sly & the Family Stone, and P-Funk. Backed by a cascading choir, Glover shows off a set of pipes I don’t think anyone knew he had. This curveball is a wonderful change of pace for the Gambino project, offering a strange fusion of rap production with live instrumentation. Give him credit, he’s revolutionized both television and his musical ambitions in the same year.

The track begins slowly, with piercing synths meandering atop a breath-y female vocal performance. The synths are part g-funk, part signals to a higher alien calling. The drums are nothing more than syncopated hi-hats and snaps. Part of what makes the section section of “Me and Your Mama” so great is the restraint displayed in the first half. The monster collision that is the song’s second part only explodes because of its relation to the intro. Glover sings, “Let me into your heart/They want to see us falling apart,” as if that’s even a possibility for him at this point.