GOOD COPS DON'T EXIST: ALBUM REVIEW
Chris Crack is well on his way to becoming a Chicago legend, and he’s not afraid to strike down anyone who gets in his way. Between Twitter beefs with rappers to dropping albums seemingly on a whim, Chris Crack is impossible to pin down. In 2019 he released five full-length albums. You might think that this would mean a drop in quality, but it was the opposite: each album had its own unique flavor and saw him pushing different sounds. Crack’s newest project, Good Cops Don’t Exist, is his second of 2020 and shows him starting to put together elements of everything that he has hinted at in his previous work. Good Cops Don’t Exist is Crack’s most complete album and suggests good things for him in the future.
Crack has always had a knack for picking names for his songs. On this album, we have the songs “Black Don’t Crack Unless You Smoke it” and “Reparations Not Decorations,” but some of my favorite titles from past albums include “Hoes at Trader Joes” and “Goals only Exist in Soccer.” In previous projects, the song titles rarely had anything to do with the content of the songs (unfortunately “Hoes at Trader Joes” is about neither hoes nor Trader Joes), but on this project, Chris Crack stays on topic. “Black Don’t Crack Unless You Smoke it” is an awesome song with a sweeping instrumental that actually is about attractive old people and drugs. These songs sticking a bit more to their assigned topics make them more memorable and make the entire project flow better.
The album cover also helps contextualize Crack’s bigger message. The cover shows a scene of Chicago with an angry CPD officer snarling, their face replaced by the head of a pig. Often on "Good Cops Don't Exist" Chris Crack straddles the line between activist and so offensive that he should be canceled. But, when Chris Crack he makes a statement he always makes it with his chest. This contrast between wokeness and spontaneity surfaces at various points during the album, for example, the song “Reparations Not Decorations” opens with a Baldwin speech about equality over an XXXTentacion instrumental. XXXTentacion and Balwin stood for antithetical things, but Chris Crack brings their voices together.
Chris Crack is an extremely technically skilled rapper, but don’t come into this album expecting anything conscious. He describes his music on this project as “gold chain music,” and that’s exactly how it sounds. On the standout song “I Know A Place” he asks us “Why do strip clubs always have the best food?” then a couple of bars later he says “Gotta turn a whole message to a message, I’m just saying let’s be less sexist.” These wild and wide-ranging bars are a perfect encapsulation of what makes Chris Crack’s music so fun to listen to.
Chris Crack also completely changes up the beats he raps over on this project. Traditionally, Crack has stuck to soul-sample, Kanye-era sounding beats, but the instrumentals on Good Cops Don’t Exist are much more polished and produced. The beat of “Go Where You’re Prioritized” is a standout. It has a west-coast ride and energy and Crack perfectly matches the beat with a laid back and effortless flow.
There are a couple of songs that are just plain weird. “Keep it Delicious” is maybe the least sexy, sex-anthem of all time. Between lyrics like, “Back is always hurting cause my posture” and some warbly and trippy singing, “Keep it Delicious” is a wild listen. Even though each of the elements of the song on their own sound awful, Chris Crack still manages to put together an entertaining and legitimately good song. That is the magic of this record. Chirs Crack turns the weirdest lyrics and subjects into extremely rewarding songs. If you’re looking for some whacky rap bangers this project is perfect for you.