The idea of writing this review has excited me ever since I got ahold of a copy of Weight & Glory a few weeks ago, not only to get my thoughts on this stellar album “on paper,” but also to introduce new rapper, KB to our readers. Kevin Burgess (aka KB) is the newest member of the Reach Records crew, and was handpicked by founder Lecrae as an up-and-coming standout with a solid heart for the Lord.
KB, raised in Southern Illinois and St. Petersburg, Florida, was a self-proclaimed drug-user, hedonist, and a man far from God when he met a Christian in school who changed his life. From there, he learned about Christ’s sacrifice and caught fire for spreading the Gospel, especially after hearing Christian hip hop that was both legit, and of sound doctrine. He formed the group HGA (His Glory Alone) as a ministry tool to spread God through music in Florida, and caught the ear of Lecrae.
Since then, KB has been an incredible guest rapper, making appearances with Lecrae on “Used To Do It Too,” Trip Lee on “One Sixteen,” and featuring prominently on the Man Up album from the 116 Clique (Check his stellar verse on “Envy”). His mix-tape, Who Is KB? was extremely popular and garnered 30,000 downloads since its release last year, and Weight & Glory proves to be a worthy introduction to the young rapper.
From the opening piano of “Weight Music” as it segues into intense beats and rapid fire rapping, you know this is going to be a instant classic. His first two singles from the disc, “Zone Out” and “Go Off” were incredibly catchy and good tracks, but they don’t do the the whole album justice by a long shot. The first few songs on the album do a great job of setting the stage, but once you hit the middle of the disc, you really get into the meat of his message.
“Mr. Pretender” boasts an insane beat and killer hook, but it’s the lyrics that hit the hardest. It’s all taken from the perspective of Sin personified, and deals with “his” deception and traps. Lyrics tempt with porn, weed, “safe sex,” etc., and how “You can be a Christian and live in me. God can have the public, but in private, it’ll be him and me,” but the truth rings solid.
“Anomaly” and “Tear It Down” also deal with the lies that the world offers and how we, as Christians should not believe them, but even more, should overthrow them with the truth of the Gospel. “Open Letter (Battlefield)” is another incredible track, that features Trip Lee, Swoope, and Jai. The first two verses are based on actual letters KB has received from fans asking for prayer and help with specific sins and struggles, and the third brings it all together in a powerful way, with Trip saying a prayer for them to protect and lift them up.
“Church Clap” gets Lecrae rapping on the verse, and is almost like a Christian response to Kanye West’s “Jesus Walks” in message and delivery, while “Don’t Mean Much” addresses the type of thinking head on when KB raps “You make a song about Jesus, you’re never going to Hell? Yeah, that’s written in the first book of… What was it?… nowhere.” Even further, he sings in “Angels” about the dangers of the love of money, and how there is only One whom the angels praise.
“Heart Song” is another extremely emotional song that is sure to give you shivers, as it features a Florida girl named Jasmine Le’Shea singing on the chorus. Le’Shea is a 26-year old who was diagnosed with congestive heart failure at 15, and received a heart transplant back in 2001. She baffled doctors with her will to praise God above anything else, never blaming Him for what happened, and KB tells the story in his song. Most impacting is the line, “The average lifespan of a heart transplant is ten to fifteen years, and my dear sister Jasmine is on year eleven. As I get to know her, the more I find out, no matter what happens, she has a heart that will never stop beating.”