Faith I Got, I Feel Holy
Musings on Pi'erre Bourne, the NBA, and Steven Spielberg
Pi’erre Bourne - The Life of Pi’erre 5
If you needed to describe Pi’erre Bourne’s production, the most apt description would be to think of the hypnotic state of mind you’d be in at around 4 am after playing games on your N64 or Playstation all night in your childhood bedroom, hopped up on soda and candy. Pi’erre’s sound is a mix of late 90s-early 00s video game scores, Spongebob Squarepants, and peak emo soundcloud romanticism. It makes for the perfect canvas for incredibly dexterous and playful rappers like Playboi Carti or Lil Uzi Vert, and acts as a great counterweight to the homicidal grimness of Young Nudy. But more and more the artist who is starting to figure out the best way to use a Pi’erre beat is Pi’erre himself. While a genius of a producer, he’s been through growing pains as a rapper, trying to mold a style in real time that combines his tortured, amateur singing with his melodic, amateur rapping. And yet, each project released has seen him slowly form a true style and identity that fits him—culminating in The Life of Pi’erre 5, his most cohesive, strongest record to date.
Pi’erre’s music is for losing yourself in. The sensation best dramatized by the old Arthur meme of Binky Barnes floating into a hypnotic, lava-lamp void created by the power of music, is what Bourne seems to be shooting for. Pi’erre isn’t a masterful rapper or dazzling singer but, predictably, he best understands what to do to complement his beats rather than overpower them. The effect is this druggy, ethereal sound that has been pretty played out, but to Bourne’s credit, he’s at least silly and fun about it.
“Vibez” rap/R&B is a bit like Jazz, in that it takes a discerning ear to explain what makes one moody, drowsy, drug-addled record different from another. Its music to be swallowed up by and drown in, not for casual listening. Pi’erre creates a sonic worldview with his musical style, a collapsing of Tumblr/Soundcloud aesthetic, nostalgic cartoons and video game soundtracks. This is a guy who’ll rap “Spongebob, Spongebob, my nigga Pattrick” with the purest earnestness. It may be grating or a bit off-putting, but if you’re able to get on it’s wavelength, you may just find yourself transfixed.
A Quick Thing About The NBA
Let’s be honest, we still should not be playing sports. That’s first of all. The cancellation of sports in 2020 was the right decision and played a large role in the country finally taking covid protocol seriously. But because this is America, where everything is a transaction and the idea of not generating wealth for the 1% would apparently create armageddon, sports, the NBA to be specific, was back within three months. The Bubble was absolutely obscene, a multi-month prison sentence for NBA athletes to perform and make money in a state that all but pretended covid-19 wasn’t even real. The players union, which too often tends to side with management for the benefit of the league’s richest stars, was more than happy to acquiesce to this insane experiment—and then when the threat of a players’ strike for social justice could’ve put an early end to the Bubble season, the union (with trusty help from Obama) played a hand in stifling dissent. If the bubble wasn’t disgusting enough for you, the NBA then decided that, in an effort to get back on its typical schedule, they would have an incredibly shortened offseason before getting back into a nearly full NBA season for this year.
It would be unfair to say that these decisions are what lead us to where we are now: a playoff where the league’s stars are dropping like flies to injury. But certainly for a karmic standpoint, the NBA is now in the grave of its own making. I am not someone who feels like ratings actually matter, particularly in this time, but it haas been extremely harmful for the league’s image to watch so many stars succumb to injury in such a short amount of time. It’s not that the NBA is especially worse than any other league that has pushed through with their plans to keep playing through a pandemic, but Adam Silver likes to have his cake and eat it too. He is happy to pump up the NBA’s brand as the progressive sports league despite not having much progression to show.. and let me tell you, there’s nothing worse than trying to pump up a phony image.
I don’t know what to do with myself anymore. Maybe I never really did. I don’t know what I’m doing and it doesn’t feel like there’s a way forward. I keep hoping God or someone will enter my life and show me the right choices. I’m tired of only being able to live in my head to find any bit of happiness. Heaven knows, I’m truly blue on this lovely June.
Steven Spielberg kinda sucks.
This isn’t exactly breaking news to anyone who pays attention to Hollywood gossip or reads books like Easy Riders, Raging Bulls. Still, between this tweet and the news that Spielberg is the latest to be bought off by Netflix, despite fighting vehemently to keep the service from being recognized by the Academy, it’s always nice to be reminded that Steve is a happy sellout that more or less ruined movies by ushering in both the blockbuster era and the comic nerd domination.
I hate being a burden and I hate begging, but I am also trying my best to make a worthwhile writing career and make a great literary novel, in order to make the big bucks with speaking engagements. And so, to make that happen I am asking you and everyone you know to help me go to grad school. If you’ve ever enjoyed anything I have written or if you know someone with money, please help contribute to the fund. I need it as soon as possible and I thank you for all the support so far, it’s been really, truly moving to witness. Please let’s keep this going.