The Fort Lauderdale and Miami-based musical group Bulletproof Soul drops their anticipated album Grasping Things at the Root on July 28. Ahead of the album release comes a genre-blending single, “The Whip,” out now. “The Whip” sheds light on the masterful sound curation of the group, shifting through neo-soul rhythms, hip-hop-heavy lyrics, and brushstrokes of art pop.
This 12-track project meditates on the importance of cultural unity through stories of dialectical materialism and social conditioning. And although the album’s title suggests the lyrics will grasp things at the root, the project does the exact opposite. By avoiding heavy-handed lyrics and blatant messages, the band elevates their storytelling skills.
“Although it would be very punk rock to kick off the Bulletproof Soul era with to-the-point, anti-imperialist, radical messaging, we thought it best to deliver a message more subtle in nature, a message all may just be able to get behind. We thought it best to address the why of issues, such as crime, or why community and culture feel more and more tenuous by the day. We wanted to present cultural unity,” the band said.
According to Bulletproof Soul, the true worth of one’s life is how one affects others around them, a lingering message present throughout each track but emphasized in the first tune, “The Community,” and the final track, “The Root.”
Throughout the project, members including Austin Moore-Farrow, Nyyjerya, eqobKING, SLWJMZ, Lofty305, DJ Sabrina the Teenage DJ, Kengeta, TWENTYN9NE, and Ali Wisdom reflect on the importance of cultural unity in a time of oppression and systemic issues.
“The twist after listening to the album, though it could be obvious right away, is that the album is actually about everyone in society. Everyone can and is affected by social conditioning to some extent. Most working-class people have to do things they don’t want to do to survive, while many also suffer from their material conditions,” Bulletproof Soul explained.
The group utilizes strong social metaphors in each track, demonstrating their social education as well as lived experiences.
“Just to be free. Learned from Huey I won't leave. You can be. What you wanna be. Learn from me.”
This double reference calls to frontman Austin Moore-Farrow’s inspiration, Huey Newton, a co-founder of the Black Panther party, and a character based on him from the cartoon The Boondocks, Huey Freeman, a young Political Panther that embraces counterculture.
Grasping Things at the Root chooses to speak on issues typically swept under the rug, making the coalition stand out for its bravery and unwavering social commentary. Aside from the political stance, we have talented lyricists speaking their truth and next-level production, relying on their community to emphasize the album’s main message.
“It is important to remember at the end of the day, community can solve our problems; organizing, unionizing, being there for one another. Community and culture is the root of society, not money and greed. Because without each other, we are just a drifting rose in a sea of faces,” the band shared, noting the album cover features Angela Davis and Amouranth and the title named after a Davis quote..