Since the release of Searching Sylvan, Sylvan LaCue has consistently proven he’s one of the best rappers out. While he may not receive the popularity or looks of artists like J. Cole and Chance The Rapper, the quality of his music is certainly on par. With the release of Apologies in Advance, Sylvan proves this once more. While a large portion of rap these days is overly simplistic, favoring melodies and heavy production in place of lyricism and storytelling, Sylvan ops to stay true to himself. The album may be the deepest exploration of one’s self I’ve heard in a rap record. There’s no persona, no falsehood, just unbridled honesty. It’s a theme we’re seen in that past from LaCue but Apologies in Advance takes things deeper than ever before.
The project is tied together with a series of skits (9 total) that take you inside a support group of millennials opening up and exploring things like self-worth, motivation, anxiety, unattainable perfection and more. At first glance the concept could seem corny and if the execution wasn’t there it would be. Thankfully, it is there. The conversations feel honest and are deeply relatable. They serve the story well and help to deepen the concept. Each skit gives you a new perspective and warms you to new ideas that Sylvan explores in depth in the following song.
While the skits may become tiresome/redundant with multiple listens leading to skips, the music itself is definitely skip free. The 11 songs contained within the project are nothing short of amazing. The production, which was mainly handled by LaCue himself, provides the perfect back drop on each track. It’s powerful enough to command your attention while not being overpowering, which allows Sylvan’s lyrics to be the be the focal point. The lyrics hit deep, whether they’re inspiring you or forcing you to look inwards and re-evaluate yourself. It’s not the easiest listen you’ll approach this year, but it’s likely to be one of the best. Apologies In Advance proves that quality rap music hasn’t gone anywhere, you just may need to look a bit further than the Billboard and SoundCloud charts.