Mykki Blanco – Mykki
Mykki is a masterpiece. It’s to queer hip hop and spoken word as what the Mona Lisa was to Renaissance painting. It’s a harrowing, emotional, funny, intimate, and disturbing journey into the heart of the artist. Exploring all their fears and desires as they collide in an entertaining journey that will leave you breathless.
Intimacy and love is the central theme to the album, cited in one of the piece’s interludes as Blanco’s primary desire, specifically that of a one-on-one monogamous relationship. Each track certainly feels intimate, as if Blanco is making love to the audience and developing a relationship with us. Even the more humorous elements, bouncy and comedic with vocals, recited spoken word in an exaggerated comical tone contain a playful winking and nudging shared only on the darkest of nights with the closest of partners. When the word “FAGGOTS” is screamed on the peppy track “For the Cunts,” it’s followed with giggles and whispers. The profanity and perversity isn’t meant to shock or repulse, but to draw us closer, to give us a deeper understanding.
Mykki is an album that is undeniably queer and has little concern with appealing to straight audiences, though that doesn’t mean they can’t or shouldn’t enjoy the work. It’s a work that’s weird and wonderful and touching all on its own, the type of thing that needs to be listened to in its entirety from beginning to end to truly comprehend its greatness and narrative. That being said, queer audiences in particular will find enjoyment in it for how well Blanco encapsulates queer identity and experiences in the lyrics. From desire to sexuality, even a jealous tantrum that quickly fades into apology before returning to vengeful anger.
The album stands as a portrait of a human being with all the flaws and magnificence therein. We’re invited to look at the scars, the mirth and the beauty and revel in the chaotic mishmash of it all. It’s a celebration, a wedding and a funeral all-in-one, the type of all-encompassing ambitious project that marks the sign of a truly magnificent and talented artist.