freddyING in the name of god

FreddyING finds the faith on In The Name of God.

FreddyING is at a crossroads. His voice doesn’t quiver when it finds confidence; fear has already walked beside it and twisted it away. If one Compton rapper is concerned with the world praying for him, FreddyING is wondering not exactly about prayer but if he’s doing the right thing at all.

“There’s gotta be a reason that I’m still here,” he says on “Lituation” from In The Name of God. It doesn’t come off as a statement of assurance, rather one of confusion. Freddy’s lost friends at 22, that first piece of life where adulthood actually means something. At 25, they’re still slipping and fading away. All Freddy can do is sing about it, inside the same stretched warbles of autotune that feel closer to finding your own idea of heaven.

Maybe there is a purpose behind sticking gospel undertones at the beginning of In The Name Of God. Freddy believes he should have been dead a long time ago yet believes angels carry him through, whether they be in the outfield of the streets of Houston or in closed spaces. “Swear I’ve been going through hell / All of my friends dead or in jail…” he sings on “Hallelujah”. To be so concerned with death that you feel companionship is the only means of salvation is a frightening premise. Yet FreddyING swallows all throughout, hoping for any piece of salvation to snatch him away.

In The Name of God is an excursion. Some of the ideas and concepts are repetitive but its akin to carrying the cross, the same burdens you wish to wash away at a moment’s notice. Drug usage in safe spaces chases the demons away but Freddy is quick to give lessons without sounding preachy or pretentious. “Don’t lose your soul,” he professes on “L U C Y”, once more affixing the idea of the Devil as a singular being. “I need a miracle,” he says later on. “I don’t know why he keeps blessing me.”

Probably the one person who gets FreddyING’s dance with pain and loss is Rocky Banks. Two years after watching his life nearly slip through his hands, Banks shows up with his rapid fire frantic disposition with his own interlude. “I been on my knees for many days, Bible told me go pray and pray,” he raps from a position of wonder. Prayer doesn’t work the same way, manifestations and refusing to sell his soul should have won him something more. But in the eyes of an Old Testament God, fury and punishment is all Rocky can see. He has punished his good friend by isolating him through death. Why would God not punish him even if he’s discovered his own salvation without drugs or negativity?

Through 10 tracks, Freddy’s world is loosely tied to that of funk, gospel and even a bit of the blues. The hip-hop slash of moody keyboards and guitars make our hero feel like he’s on a giant revival trip. Even if forces he can and cannot see linger around him, FreddyING has an end game. Happiness. It’s the one thing he wants to fuck with the hardest.

Stream In The Name of God from FreddyING here by way of the artist’s Soundcloud.

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