When it comes to traditional, organic Southern hip-hop, Big K.R.I.T. is definitely the best representative of that sound in this new, internet-generation of rappers. With his latest release, Cadillactica, K.R.I.T. literally creates a polished, wholesome world of his own where he flexes his experimental muscles as much as possible without stepping away from his hearty, Southern roots.
In 2012, K.R.I.T. found himself to be yet another victim of a fairly new dilemma plaguing artists that built a career on giving away free, album-quality music. As soon as these said artists sign a major deal and release a studio album, many factors including label pressure, lack of creative control, single-chasing, and ultimately exerting focus on mainstream appeal allow for a lacking, deteriorated, diluted product. K.R.I.T.’s debut, Live From the Underground, received notable amounts of critical acclaim, but seemed to suffer a similar fate. Although it was far from horrible as a standalone project, it seemed flat compared to K.R.I.T.’s near-perfect discography. Live found Big K.R.I.T. seemingly plucking the thematic highlights and messages of his mixtape and making it repetitive in an effort to be catchy, while beefing every track with scattered, radio-ready production that ended up not striking the hearts of his fans the same way his free projects did. K.R.I.T. himself expressed his own retrospective discontent with Live in regards to the lack of creative-control and production issues. Shoutout to sample clearances.