Thundercat’s third album and latest release Drunk is an explosion of emotions for the vocalist and bassist Stephen Bruner who delightfully puts it all out on display with this well-rounded effort. There are moments of sadness, laughter, sarcasm, confusion, and the overall thoughts of a man just trying to get through life. The highlights and surprises (and there are many) are plentiful on this album with guest stars like Michael McDonald, Kenny Loggins, Kendrick Lamar, Flying Lotus, and Pharrell to name a few. There’s something that’s just warm, familiar, and absolutely satisfying with this record.
The album starts with “Captain Stupido” and Thundercat singing “I feel weird, comb your beard, brush your teeth, still feel weird, beat your meat, go to sleep, probably left my wallet at the club, jesus take the wheel”–obviously an ode to a drunken night at the club ending with Thundercat snoring and farting. Now if this doesn’t prepare you for what’s to come, I’m not sure anything else will! The weirdness goes further and it could not be more funky, ebullient, or positively addicting! Next up we have “Bus In These Streets,” which is a soulful ode to social media and disconnecting from it.
Moving on, the absolutely most out there and interesting song is “A Fan’s Mail (Tron Suite II) in which we hear Thundercat give us his best Meow Mix cat impression. But maybe life would be better as a cat for all of us, something to ponder on this track. Things get sensual on “Lava Lamp” (and no, not with cats) and Bruner’s smooth falsetto, a transcendent voice that can usher you into some sort of funked-out waterbed does just that. The standout track on this album is Thundercat’s team-up with soft rockers Michael McDonald and Kenny Loggins on “Show You The Way.” The trio’s falsetto’s combined is like a trippy Bee Gees song but it’s absolutely fantastic and way too short, you’ll be craving more. Thankfully “Walk On By” delivers just that with Kendrick Lamar delivering an honest, and somewhat violent rap with Thundercat sending us off with his soft falsetto singing “At the end of it all, no one wants to drink alone, baby that’s how it goes, don’t walk away from me…”
“Tokyo” adds some synthful 70s funk into the mix with Thundercat rhyming about his love affair in Tokyo and adding a lot of past experience in there. The journey continues with “Jameel’s Space Ride,” a bouncy, funk track that shoots right into the synth heavy “Friend Zone” that gives a fair warning to women looking to just be “friends.” Thundercat does not tire on this album and keeps bringing the funk, especially with “Them Changes,” a pure ode to 70s funk with a dreamy-synth moment. The album begins to fade towards a darker theme with the finely-calibrated soul track “The Turn Down,” which features Pharrell. The album ends with the dreamy-synth and soul track “DUI,” closing out this incredibly focused, funky, soulful, and absolutely stunning 23 track narrative.
Purchase or listen to Drunk HERE
HEAR “Show You The Way” Below