Childish Gambino
Awaken, My Love!
Glassnote Records

After releasing two full-length rap albums, Donald Glover, aka Childish Gambino, abandons the hip hop that made his name and draws on his love of Parliament-Funkadelic and 1970s soul. The results have been praised by P-Funk legend George Clinton himself. “It sounded like a cross between P-Funk and Prince influences. I’m proud that he’s into the funk,” the 75-year-old funk innovator, who played Hong Kong’s recent Clockenflap festival, said, after hearing Gambino’s third album. Lead single Me and Your Mama harnesses the cosmic energy of the likes of Clinton and Sly Stone, driven by a fabulous throbbing bass and fuzzed-up guitars, complementing Glover’s impassioned howling and the galactic gospel chorus. On Redbone, Glover drops a sweet ’70s-style croon, before the psychedelic ballad Terrified takes us on a blissful tripped-out journey. But it’s the gigantic fiery jams Boogieman and Riot that make Awaken, My Love! more than just a simple homage to funkier times.