Burnz, an American hiphop artist from Charleston South Carolina, has dropped his autobiographical single, entitled “Life”. His insights and observations concerning himself, and subsequently his generation can be read from his lyrics sheet as pure prose. Even backed by a solid sonic collage, the signature combustion is still his own. This track jibes with a coast-to-coast aesthetic, as well as golden-era rap sound. Burnz laces this track with lessons learned and memories plucked from his entire life and he places the microscope close to his grind, sharing the harsh beauty and reality of it.
Instead of shying away or avoiding certain circumstances, Burnz turns his roller-coaster time period into a story of internal and external experiences, some of which he won and some he lost. The complete package displays an obvious maturation from the rapper that is effectively in tune with a focus that is not so easy to find elsewhere.
He also attempts to effectively bridge the gap between today’s radio demographic and listeners from a better era of hip hop. While Burnz is quick to put society under a microscope, he’s equally as transparent with his own life.
The biggest positive connection on this track lies in Burnz’ ability to couple his strong lyrics and narrative, with a well-rounded song. While clever wordplay and introspective commentary are strong suits, they tend to take a front seat to a complete composition.
In a world where the value of a song outweighs the value of the words it contains, this can pose a problem. Still, Burnz carries the torch for what many artists today are lacking, and in continuing to do so will have that lane primarily clear. It’s one he has obviously mastered and doesn’t want to be surrendering any time soon.
On “Life” Burnz offers more introspection, less neighborhood. When he does delve into his own experiences, he is, as always, a gorgeous lyricist, delivering nuanced, unforgettable descriptions of places and people. And his moments of self-reflection can be potent.
In a climate where substance is scarce, this track is necessary. It’s potent, from the excellent production, to Burnz’ thoughtful bars. It’s balanced. The Charleston emcee is open, but not emo; Hard, but also thought-provoking. “Life” is a snapshot of what it is to be Burnz, because as he has proven already, even at his lowest, the man gives his all in trying to present shoes for his listeners to walk in.