Review – ZUU (Denzel Curry)

With summer just around the corner, Denzel Curry decided to bring the heat a little early with his latest album. Equal parts Miami bass music and conscious trap, ZUU offers a peek into life in the 305. Even the album’s logo is a throwback to 2LiveCrew.

The Carol City, Florida-bred rapper labels his stomping grounds the zoo, (stylized as ZUU) and that concept is explored over 12 tracks/ interludes that make up the album. Money, brotherhood, and home are the main themes Curry talks about on the lead single “Ricky”.

“Wish”, the title track “Zuu”, and the Rick Ross-assisted “BIRDZ” are all knockers that are sure to be pumping through sound systems throughout Dade County this summer. “Shake 88”, with a vibe reminiscent of the original Freaknic, is sure to have bodies hitting the dancefloor, twerk teams included. What stands out most is that the album fits really well together. Each track is solid on its own but collectively, Zuu is for Miami what Kendrick’s Good Kid, M.A.A.D. City was for LA. The depth of Curry’s insight and lyrics conveys all of the emotions growing up in South Florida one could imagine. The cut “Speedboat” is a prime example.

“Big talk, speedboat (speedboat)
Pray to God, I don’t get repo’d (repo’d)
Didn’t go to college for a free throw (swish)
People getting killed through the peep hole (bah!)
Have your money up before you go to war (hmm)
Put the mask on like a luchador (hmm)
My dawg didn’t make it to twenty-one, so I gotta make it past twenty-four”

This album is refreshingly light on features. Instead, Curry chooses to speak for himself on the majority of the project, highlighting his Florida influences including Trick Daddy, Trina, and Plies. The result is a combination of reflection, celebration, and dealing with expectations, both good and bad. With bars like these from the song P.A.T. feat PlayThatBoiZay, it’s clear that Denzel Curry has done some soul searching.

“We’ll rob you for your chain, probably pistol whip your ho
We carry hollow tips ’cause it reflects what’s in my soul, damn
Contact, sit out, I’ma hold the fort
All black, sticks out like I’m Voldemort”

Even the “YOO” interlude adds to the authenticity that makes this album so different from the rest. Denzel Curry should ride this wave all summer long, we certainly will be.

Rating – Dope


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