Album Review | Lukah – Why Look Up, God’s in the Mirror

This album was released on September 24th this year. Lukah is an MC from Memphis who I first heard of in 2018 when he dropped his debut album, Chickenwire. With that said, I’ve never actually listened to his music myself. I have no idea what his stuff sounds like. The only reason I’m checking this out is because a lot of my acquaintances have recommended him to me. This is the second album that Lukah has released this year, so if I enjoy it enough I’ll go back and check out the first one he dropped back in January. All of the production is handled by an artist named Walz, whom I’d never heard of before. I’ve never even heard Lukah on features, so I’m going into this project completely blind. I have zero expectations.

As always, I’ll write about the songs I actually like before covering the material that I won’t be returning to. The album begins with MOBBIN’ ON WATER, which has a pretty great Boom Bap beat. I love how dusty the drums sound. As an MC, Lukah reminds me a lot of SaVon. I feel like a collaboration between them would be fire. Pretty much as soon as Lukah started rapping, I was convinced that he’s a talented lyricist.

God with this
Turn water to Henny, niggas should honor this
Astonishing how I come and get 'em, kill 'em and conquer shit
Dominant, so I'll give glory to he who's prominent
And when I pass on, guarantee I'll deserve a monument
Stuck with this and let's make this clear: busters can't fuck with this
Monstrous, too ill to digest, so niggas can't stomach this
Carcasses, I leave 'em to rot for future antagonists
Analyzing this gon' be tough for even an analyst

The whole song is just one verse, but it’s really well done. He rapped really well here, and, as I said before, I really like the production. I think the song’s pretty good overall. It’s followed by an even better song called ERMINE. This one opens with a pretty nice verse from Estee Nack. The beat from Walz sounds like something that Joey Bada$$ would’ve rhymed over on his Summer Knights mixtape. It’s a pretty dope instrumental. As much as I liked Estee Nack’s performance, I think Lukah had the better verse.

I be with the troopers
You niggas be fakin' the funk on computers
Straight frontin' for viewers
My niggas straight maneuvers with Rugers

The hook isn’t really anything special, but the rapping is really damn good. I think it’s a dope track overall. The following track is entitled THE SEINE. I really like the relatively smooth beat on this track. The song doesn’t really have the most interesting structure; Lukah is just rapping the whole time with no hook or bridge. The verse itself is very good though.

My mama used to tell me they would wanna see me fall
I hope they hear this when I say this loud, fuck 'em all
Yeah, I'm the cause for this new vicious southern drawl
When I arrived I could've walked, but I chose to crawl
I had to learn the basics, stay down, and see all the movements
Asked a hundred million things, sometimes I felt like a nuisance
Had to get the circle right, and do away with the Judas
Spittin' this for the real, then I'll be sure to give them the mucus

I feel like I would probably appreciate this song more if it had a more fleshed out structure, but I still enjoyed it. It does end kind of abruptly, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. I think it’s a pretty good song. The following track is called GLASSHOUSES, and I feel pretty much the same way about it. The dark production is really dope, and Lukah’s verse is nice too.

I'm from the side where niggas creep out the cut
I'm from the side where niggas slide, where the guns known to bust
I'm from the side where mamas cry because their sons are in cuffs
I'm from the side where brothers die, go from ashes to dust
I'm from the side you catch a body, next day you in church
And on your knees prayin' forgiveness 'cause the burden's too much
I'm from the side where little infants grow up fucked and corrupt
And then you catch them on the news, they die victim to slugs

Once again, the song ends kind of abruptly. The verse is very good, and I fuck with the production, but, as a whole, the song feels a little undercooked. I think a good hook and a second verse would’ve improved it a lot. It’s still a good track as it is though. I fuck with it. It’s followed by BODIES N FREEZER, which is the only song on the album that really blew me away. It features two artists named St. Courts & Ben Official, neither of whom were familiar to me before listening. However, I really enjoyed both of their performances. I’m not sure who that is on the hook; I’m assuming it’s St. Courts, but I could be wrong. The hook itself is great though. I really like his flow. The dark production from Walz is great too. I think the first verse is performed by Ben Official, who had a really nice flow. He switched it up a few times, which was nice. The song was already pretty enjoyable to me, but Lukah came through on that second verse and fucking slaughtered it. His breath control is absolutely mesmerizing here. He fucking snapped. That’s easily the best verse on the whole album in my opinion.

Them hitters is comin' to get you
You shouldn't have brought this shit up out of me
Strap will perform a lobotomy
Dead your apology, Ruger fuck all of you pussies
My shit don't know none 'bout monogamy
Stagin' no robberies, nigga, this 187, I'm at your door with animosity
Brought the ferocity, suckers be thinkin' we jokin'
'Til shells come and cease all the mockery
Busters be gossipy, fuck all the bullshit you talkin', G
Real brothers see you as comedy
Heavy and armory, mastered the science of gunnery
Nigga, I aim to hit arteries

I don’t know how he managed to get through that whole verse without stopping to take a breath. He killed this shit. The song is dope as hell. The following track is called THE SEIGE. Once again, I really like the dusty percussion. The belligerent content is pretty dope too. Just like with most of the other songs, I think this song could’ve benefitted from a good hook. The whole thing is just one verse, so it doesn’t feel as fleshed out as the preceding track. It’s still pretty good though. I enjoyed it. It’s followed by STIGMATA, which is even better in my opinion. This one opens up with a pretty dope verse from Boldy James.

Dwellin' in that skyscraper, mansion with the elevator
Stick on me, no flypaper, don't do no free felony favors
Tryna pull up and collect, my youngin' keep tellin' me "later"
Both middle fingers up to the private investigator

The way Lukah comes in right behind him is nice. I honestly think Lukah had the better verse, but they both did a very good job. This is one of the better songs on the album in my opinion. It’s really dope. It’s followed by another dope track called STYGIAN. The song follows the same structure as a lot of the other songs; it’s just one verse without a hook or bridge. I think the main reason I like it so much more than a lot of the other tracks is just because of the production. The beat is relatively melodic and dreamy. The verse from Lukah is also very good too though. I think the song is dope overall. Track 10 is called THE WAY TO DAMASCUS, and it’s got one of the best instrumentals on the whole album in my opinion. The song also just feels more fleshed out than a lot of the others to me. I also think this song features some of Lukah’s best writing on the project.

I've had my life flash before my eyes, bullets wizzing by my head
I hit the pavement, like fuck, my homie caught one in his leg
Rushin' back to my whip, my dog was lettin' off shots
My girl was sittin' in this shit, thankful she ain't get popped
Picture that, unknown niggas really gunnin' after you
So, yes, my trust is fucked up, gotta vile attitude

The beat switches up after about 2 and a half minutes, and gets a lot darker. I honestly don’t know which beat I prefer; they’re both really dope. Honestly, this is probably my second favorite song on the album. It’s one of the most fleshed out, complete-sounding tracks on the project. It’s really dope. The following track, THE CONFLICT, is also pretty good. Once again, it’s got a really straightforward structure—just one verse with no hook or bridge—but Lukah’s performance is very good. I appreciate how aggressive his delivery is here. This isn’t one of my favorite songs on the album, but I definitely enjoyed it to some extent. I think it’s pretty good. Track 12 is called AGONY IN THE GARDEN, and it features an artist named Suni Katz. The dark production is pretty solid, and the way Suni Katz & Lukah are going back and forth trading bars is really dope. This is easily the best display of chemistry between Lukah and another artist on the whole album. I wasn’t familiar with Suni Katz prior to hearing this song, but I was pretty impressed with his performance.

Nigga, more than 6 feet
Cut off the limbs, put 'em in bags like we was sortin' some meat
Say they want war, we at your door equipped with more than some heat
Niggas be draggin' this shit out too long, and spoil the beef
Bodies get stored in the jeep

There’s no hook or bridge on this track, but the way Lukah & Suni Katz were going back and forth helped keep things interesting. I think this is another one of the better tracks on the album. It’s really dope to me. Track 13 is called MEDITATE N GRAVE, and it’s got another nice dark beat. Once again, the song’s got a very straightforward structure. Lukah’s just rapping the whole time with no hook or bridge. However, I actually think this song features one of his better performances on the album. I love how aggressive his delivery is here, and his flow is really nice. The song is dope. The penultimate track is called COLORED ONE. The beat on this track is nowhere near as dark as most of the other instrumentals. It’s still very good though. I appreciate how melodic and soulful it is. I think Lukah’s content matches the tone of the production really well too.

Supreme dialect, but these fuckers say we lack intellect
Ask why the anger, but won't acknowledge the disconnect
Pass down behaviors and niggas refuse to retrospect
We try to uplift, but sometimes we seem to misdirect
Hide the heartaches and the shame, and that shit hurts to suppress
They say we all free, but be real, niggas are still oppressed
Search for ways out 'cause we trapped, and lord knows we try our best
Born into war, can imagine it's hard to decompress

Again, the song’s got a very straightforward structure, but the rapping and production are so good that I don’t even mind. I think the song is really dope. The closing track is called IMMACULATE CONCEPTION, and it’s a 9 minute song featuring Cities Aviv. I definitely wouldn’t consider myself a fan of Cities Aviv, but I didn’t mind his appearance on this track at all. The way he was trading verses with Lukah was pretty cool. Lukah definitely rapped way better than Cities Aviv, but they both did a good job in my opinion. The beat thankfully switches up multiple times throughout the song. I think the production gets better and better as the song progresses to be honest. The song really takes listeners on a journey, which isn’t really a surprise given the length. I didn’t love this song on my first listen, but it grew on me after some time. I think it’s really dope. The only track on this album that I don’t really care for is called LUNCHEON ON THE GRASS. I don’t think it’s a bad song, but I just really do not care for the content. It’s pretty much just about fucking, and the lyricism gets disgustingly vivid and detailed.

Shawty the best with the suction, she follow when I give instructions
Her heart get to pumpin', yeah, we be intensively fuckin'
She havin' orgasmic eruptions, be grinding and bumpin'
Be riding the dick like she on it, be rubbin' and scratchin' and tuggin'
Her nipples I'm suckin', her pussy I really be lovin'
So fire that a nigga can't function, she love that I'm thuggin'
Me and her steady be puffin', I aim for her chest when I'm bustin'
Get tight when she comin', fuck her like she owin' me something

I just don’t know why anyone would want to hear about this. In what context would someone even listen to a song like this? I mean, I’m sure plenty of people listen to music like this, but it’s just not my style at all. I think Lukah’s flow and delivery sound pretty great, but I can’t get with these lyrics. I also don’t really care for the vocals from Kendrick P. at all. It’s not a bad song to me overall, but I’d never listen to it again. I think it’s mediocre.

This is a good album. I think Lukah is more than competent as an MC, and I really like the dark Boom Bap production on this album from Walz. I think the one area where there’s obvious room for growth is the songwriting department. There aren’t a lot of memorable hooks or bridges, and most of the songs follow the same formula. I don’t think anyone can deny Lukah’s skill on the mic though. I’m definitely gonna go back and check out his first couple of projects now because I enjoyed this album. I look forward to seeing how he develops his sound in the future. This shit is dope.



Grade: B-

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