There has been a lot of noise being made on the West Coast over the past year. Kendrick continues to shake the rap world with each verse. Nipsey took the power away from the majors by showing you can make big bucks solo by moving mixtapes at 100 dollars a pop. With that being said, Dom Kennedy and his OPM crew have been quietly making moves on their own. Kennedy and his team have not been phased by the MMG rumors of courtship, as they have seemed locked in on what’s really important: the music. Looking to dominate more than the summer season, DK switched up his style and hit the fall hard by releasing his new album Get Home Safely.
Dom has hung his hat on dominating the summer with many of his previous mixtape and album releases but the king of summer barbecues took this July off and now he’s making up for missed time with his new album. Get Home Safely is the story of Dom Kennedy as a Leimert Park Legend. Dom begins his first verse with “This what I am supposed to say, forgot what I meant/Imma buy me a house, I’m so tired of rent,” which summarizes one Kennedy’s greatest assets: his relatability.
What makes Dom a master of words is his ability to take you through the common man struggle and not have it wear you down. Dom kicks off the album with “Let’s Be Friends,” a track which finds him discussing his love of women. Dom doesn’t do a lot of interviews, but that might be because if you listen closely, all you need to know about him is in the music. Dom gives fans a little bit of his back-story in “217,” revealing the plights of his dad working a 9 to 5 and wanting to travel the world when he was young. The Left Coast natives ability to transition from light hearted stuff to serious content with ease gives this album great replay value and surprising depth.
Dom is one of the few artists in the game whose fan base does not seem phased if they were to see a track listing of his album with two or three collabs on it. Kennedy has done a great job over the years proving he can create compelling music standing alone. On Get Home Safely much is the same with Dom, as the project goes 18 tracks with four features. With that being said, everyone collaboration makes sense, and each guest artist delivers a solid contribution. Fellow Cali native Nipsey Hussle makes an appearance on “Pleeze,” giving you a taste of what Crenshaw is like with bars like “Deader than the J‘s on August St./Pops drove a turquoise 280z/Playing Tracey Chapman we was watching Heat/Shootouts in the alley make is hard to sleep.” Krondon is invited into the Leimert Park Legends world on “Honey Buns” as they discuss their love of the ladies.
In regards to production, Dom brings a lot of different sounds to the table on the album. Due to the variation found on each track, this album offers his greatest chance to pull fans from different regions. The production is dominated on the tape by The Futurisks, who have been cranking out jams as of late with some of the best rappers in the game (Nipsey Hussle, Casey Veggies). OPM crew member DrewByrd shows great synergy with Dom on the single “Domonic.” The track sequencing is one of the greatest strengths of the album; no beat seems out of place allowing you to glide smoothly through the album. That diversity and efficiency is reflected in the lyrical content as well: the frequency of thought provoking songs not-related to women is at an all-time high for him. DK and the OPM crew may not have the major label engine behind the movement, but he has proven with Get Home Safely that he’s one of the ambassadors of the New West. –Christian Mordi