Conan Gray’s debut album ‘Kid Krow’ soars past expectations

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Alison Goulding

Conan Gray's debut album 'Kid Krow' beautifully and vulnerably depicts complex emotions.

On March 20, 2020 Conan Gray provided us with some high-quality quarantine bops when he released “Kid Krow,” his first full album.

The album featured 12 songs, not all of which were new. Several songs had been previously released as singles including “Comfort Crowd,” “Maniac” and “Check Mate.” I’ve enjoyed these songs for months as singles, and will continue to enjoy them as part of the album.

The songs on the album, regardless of being new or old, have a wide variety of tones and moods. While songs like “Maniac” and “Wish You Were Sober” have a fun, danceable beat, while other songs like “Fight or Flight” and “The Cut That Always Bleeds” have a more somber tone.

Something Gray does very well in all his songs is painting a picture of what’s happening in the listener’s mind. Particularly in “The Story” the lyrics create an image of the song. The song tells multiple stories, all of which the listener can have a strong mental picture of.

Every song on the album has a specific mood and vibe that is truly unique to that particular song.

“Little League” is another song that displays this very well, and as a senior about to graduate this song is highly relatable. The way Gray articulates his emotions on growing up and leaving childhood is so specific, yet something anyone can relate to. It’s almost like you are reading his diary entry, but also it’s your diary at the same time.

The album has two versions, an explicit and a non-explicit version, for two of the songs. I understand the reasoning behind this, as Gray’s audience varies greatly in age, and he wants to appeal to as many people as possible.

Despite this, it makes listening to the album all the way through a bit annoying. Since the two versions are right after each other, you end up listening to the same song twice in a row, except one song swears and the other doesn’t. Now it isn’t that difficult just to skip one of the songs, but it kind of messes with the experience of listening to the album.

That is only an issue if you are listening to the album in the order it was released, if you shuffle the album the problem is gone. Also because the album has such a wide variety of tones, shuffling the album creates a unique listening experience every time.

The shift in vibes from song to song also makes this album perfect to unleash your inner dancer. If you’re looking for something to do during this lockdown, having a dance party to the album is a perfect way to not be bored anymore, as cheesy as it sounds.

Gray’s debut album makes me excited for what music he will create in the future. I will be listening to the album on repeat for the next few months, for sure.