Buddy is an LA baby, and Harlan & Alondra acts as a whistle-stop tour through the sounds of his home turf. Opening with "Real Life Shit", he starts out exploring the vertigo of success and the reality of growing up in a spotlight, paring a lazy snare with a flow that's at once remarkably precise and all-too-effortless. Then, at the risk of the listener thinking they've stumbled upon something purely introspective, "Shameless" rolls in - the kind of baller anthem you expect to hear shaking beer-sticky speakers at a block party.
Buddy has been waiting to shine for a long time. The Compton MC caught the ear of Pharrell about a decade ago, but he's just now fully stepping into the limelight with his debut album, Harlan & Alondra. The album, which was named for the intersecting streets of his childhood home, proves to be well worth the wait. "I'm just a regular nigga on an irregular mission," Buddy declares on the opening "Real Life Shit." These words set the tone for a rapper who keeps his feet on the ground and his head in the clouds.