Good Kid, Maad City was one of the biggest albums of this generation, and easily of the past decade. Kendrick Lamar constructed a rich narrative filled with vulnerability, anguish, and hope; listeners felt and related to the emotions driving the deeply personal storytelling forward. There were few moments on the album that were as touching and shock as "Sing About Me, I'm Dying of Thirst", which was told from the perspective of a doomed friend's older brother and a young woman forced to sell her body to make ends meet. The melancholy in the former's voice right before the final gunshots abruptly ended his soliloquy or the latter's desperate, prideful defiance were made worse by the spot on production; with only a guitar and mellow drums, it was minimal, but bluesy enough to support the sad tale Lamar weaves.
With the amount of big budget producers helping in the creation of this LP, it was a shock to see Like's name in the credit listing for this tragically beautiful song. He may be an unknown producer to majority of the listeners, but when he steps in front of the microphone, he will definitely be more recognizable. Like is one of the founding members of Pac Div, the California trio who has made waves underground with their multiple mixtapes. While he might have been a rapper for most of his career, it has become more and more apparent that his beat making talents are too good to ignore.
"Sing About Me" may have shown the world his under-appreciated skills, but its been the multiple loose tracks he's released online that have proven it wasn't a fluke. "Like Water" happens to be the most recent, and possibly the most trap influenced. Like normally opts to go the chill or smooth soulful route, however, this time he breaks out the hard-hitting bass kicks, high flying hi-hats, and electronic synthesizers that will leave listeners ready to fight everyone. His style is very unique, which is what makes it so interesting. The synthesizers are strangely off beat at some points and the snares are not the most crisp, but the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. It's imperfection are easily overlooked at certain points and eventually longed for.
Like has a lot of potential to become a great producer, even if he remains an underground secret. If you have a chance, you should check out his soundcloud, where he has collected all of his single tracks. He has something for seemingly everyone, and he continues to progress. He is definitely one to keep an eye on in the future.