Good Kid, M.A.A.D City (studio album) by Kendrick Lamar

Good Kid, M.A.A.D City
Good Kid, M.A.A.D City by Kendrick Lamar
Year: 2012
Release date: 2012-10-22
Overall rank: 39th   Overall chart historyOverall chart history
Average Rating: 
88/100 (from 1,760 votes)
  Ratings distributionRatings distribution   Average rating historyAverage rating history
Award Best album of 2012 (1st)
Award Top 10 albums of the 2010s (3rd)
Award Top 50 albums of all time (39th)

Kendrick Lamar bestography

Good Kid, M.A.A.D City is ranked 2nd best out of 8 albums by Kendrick Lamar on

The best album by Kendrick Lamar is To Pimp A Butterfly which is ranked number 23 in the list of all-time albums with a total rank score of 40,985.

Kendrick Lamar album bestography « Higher ranked (23rd) This album (39th) Lower ranked (296th) »
To Pimp A ButterflyGood Kid, M.A.A.D CityDamn.

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Good Kid, M.A.A.D City track list

  Track ratingsTrack ratings The tracks on this album have an average rating of 89 out of 100 (all tracks have been rated).

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Good Kid, M.A.A.D City ratings

Average Rating: 
88/100 (from 1,760 votes)
  Ratings distributionRatings distribution Average Rating = (n ÷ (n + m)) × av + (m ÷ (n + m)) × AV
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n = number of ratings an item has currently received.
m = minimum number of ratings required for an item to appear in a 'top-rated' chart (currently 10).
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05/06/2021 17:34 Cytoma  Ratings distributionRatings distribution 13479/100
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05/05/2021 17:02 toast4you  Ratings distributionRatings distribution 596/100
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05/02/2021 05:30 VitorDaniel  Ratings distributionRatings distribution 54777/100
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04/28/2021 17:43 Pollie  Ratings distributionRatings distribution 22083/100
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04/23/2021 06:17 reemer  Ratings distributionRatings distribution 1685/100

Rating metrics: Outliers can be removed when calculating a mean average to dampen the effects of ratings outside the normal distribution. This figure is provided as the trimmed mean. A high standard deviation can be legitimate, but can sometimes indicate 'gaming' is occurring. Consider a simplified example* of an item receiving ratings of 100, 50, & 0. The mean average rating would be 50. However, ratings of 55, 50 & 45 could also result in the same average. The second average might be more trusted because there is more consensus around a particular rating (a lower deviation).
(*In practice, some albums can have several thousand ratings)

This album is rated in the top 1% of all albums on This album has a Bayesian average rating of 88.2/100, a mean average of 86.2/100, and a trimmed mean (excluding outliers) of 88.3/100. The standard deviation for this album is 17.5.

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Good Kid, M.A.A.D City comments

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From 01/20/2021 16:50
Fantastic album, and a real preview into what would come later
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | 0 votes (0 helpful | 0 unhelpful)
From 12/31/2020 16:26
Where does one even begin with this? It has been labelled as "an instant classic" or "a modern day Illmatic" or "the album that saved the album format". Such comments usually do more harm than good, as we either subconsciously develop a defensive/negative reaction or we simply set the bar too high and then get disappointed because it's impossible for it to match our sky-high expectations. Anyways, let's just try to appreciate it for what it is.
Production is characterized by the variety of producers. It could be argued that this would lead the album to lacking a central point of reference, but that's far from what's happening here. It has a balanced all-around sound, a hint of old-school(couldn't be any other way with Dr.Dre involved) but for the most part it's full of fresh vibes. But the main achievement of the production is that it leaves a lot of room for Kendrick to shine. His delivery is otherworldly (I remember a comment that was everywhere when the album came out: "Does he ever breath?"), not to mention he effortlessly changes styles without compromising his flow by any means.
Now, the lyrics. The narrative is the best part – not that it has any glaring weaknesses in other aspects, but this is what really sets this album apart. The character development would put many books and movies to shame, let alone albums. Personal, realistic, relatable, it allows the listener to vividly visualise what's going on and get involved in the drama. He gives flesh and bone to all the human relationships (family, friends, girlfriend) and even to abstract concepts such as faith.
Sherane a.k.a Master Splinter's Daughter tells the story of meeting a girl, it's a case where the storytelling (combined with the top-notch production and delivery) is better than the actual story, which is not so special on its own (completely off-topic, but that's a common occurrence in Quentin Tarantino movies). Bitch, Don't Kill My Vibe is definitely more interesting, even though it has nothing to do with the main "plot", it is a commentary on where hip hop music scene is heading and where he stands ("I can feel the changes I can feel the new people around me just want to be famous You can see that my city found me Then put me on stages, to me that's amazin' To you that's a quick check With all disrespect, let me say this"). Then comes Backseat Freestyle, a song that is often overlooked in favor of some of the other (admittedly also great) songs, but actually is one of my favorites. It perfectly captures the essence of youth, the unfounded confidence that you are capable to go against all odds and achieve your goals ("Martin had a dream Martin had a dream Kendrick have a dream") and the immature, if not outright ridiculous, aspirations ("All my life I want money and power Respect my mind or die from lead shower I pray my dick get big as the Eiffel Tower So I can fuck the world for seventy-two hours"). The Art of Peer Pressure is where things really start to get going. Being with the homies is cool and stuff, but where do you draw the line, how far are you gonna go? The value of friendship is surpassed by the pressure of being forced into things you don't like just to fit ("we pulled up on a bunch of workin' girls And asked them what they workin' with Look at me, I got the blunt in my mouth Usually I'm drug-free, but, shit, I'm with the homies"). The fourth verse is astoundingly intense . And it's one of those songs that keeps getting better by each subsequent listen. Essential for the album's course, ambitious storytelling at its finest. In Money Trees it's all about the money ("Money trees is the perfect place for shade And that's just how I feel"). It's not one of my favorites, the whole "Ya bish" business was kinda repetitive and overall I feel it doesn't justify its length. On the other hand, there is one of the most memorable quotes of the album ("Everybody gon' respect the shooter But the one in front of the gun lives forever") and Jay Rock contributes a commendable verse. Poetic Justice is tied to the first track, as it is about Sherane ("If I told you that a flower bloomed in a dark room Would you trust it?") , so it's not that interesting. Drake is acceptable, but I could do without him, while the Janet Jackson vocal sample shines like a diamond and elevates the whole song. In Good kid the first verse hits you like a truck (the same pattern continues throughout the song, but the first one is unexpected and always hits harder) : the life on the streets is depicted as it is, stripped of its glory and our hero becomes a tragic figure facing despair and unsolvable dilemmas ("But what am I 'posed to do when the topic is red or blue And you understand that I ain't But know I'm accustomed to just a couple that look for trouble And live in the street with rank"). m.A.A.d. city sheds more light on how his character got shaped through some painful flashbacks and we get to see why Kendrick is "Compton's Human Sacrifice". In particular part I is crazy, mind-blowing stuff. Swimming Pools (Drank) on the surface follows a "poppier" approach -somewhat understandable, since it was a single- but its content is dark as the psychological struggle continues, having to deal with peer pressure ("Some people wanna fit in with the popular, that was my problem") and alcoholism ("Okay, now open your mind up and listen me, Kendrick I am your conscience, if you do not hear me Then you will be history, Kendrick I know that you're nauseous right now"). Sing About Me, I'm Dying of Thirst is the climax of the album, it's like everything that came before was only paving the way for this. The moment of catharsis, the album could have ended here as far as I 'm concerned. And I still don't buy it's 12 minutes long, it feels more like 3 or 4. The last two songs are ok (Real can get a bit annoying) but not really necessary.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | -1 votes (0 helpful | 1 unhelpful)
From 12/29/2020 18:27
it's a good album but the style is not for me. I do feel its over-rated but maybe I just dont like trap. TPAB is ten thousand times better to me... but I love jazz music and alternative hip hop so... maybe its just preference
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | -1 votes (0 helpful | 1 unhelpful)
From 12/21/2020 17:54
quite good
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | +1 votes (1 helpful | 0 unhelpful)
From 11/17/2020 14:48
Not as interesting as what comes after it, but you get multiple tastes of the potential here.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | -1 votes (0 helpful | 1 unhelpful)
From 09/12/2020 17:25
New listen for me. I see why it is so highly rated although it took me a couple of listens to tune in and feel it will grow stronger over time.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | +2 votes (2 helpful | 0 unhelpful)
From 08/21/2020 20:50
Absolutely incredible album, put Kendrick on the map as one of the best in the game
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | +1 votes (1 helpful | 0 unhelpful)
From 08/20/2020 02:25
i like it
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | +1 votes (1 helpful | 0 unhelpful)
From 07/21/2020 16:53
This is what you need to listen to understand who Kendrick is and where he comes from: His Origin Story if you will. Lyrically and musically impressive.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | +1 votes (2 helpful | 1 unhelpful)
From 07/14/2020 20:17
Really great album I like to listen here the story of Lamar in Compton. But not only the lyrics are good I like the music with all the beats and drops on almost every track you can here a recording of people who influenced Lamar.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | +1 votes (1 helpful | 0 unhelpful)

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Best Albums of 2012
1. Good Kid, M.A.A.D City by Kendrick Lamar
2. Lonerism by Tame Impala
3. Channel Orange by Frank Ocean
4. Bloom by Beach House
5. The Money Store by Death Grips
6. An Awesome Wave by alt-J
7. The Idler Wheel Is Wiser Than The Driver Of The Screw And Whipping Cords Will Serve You More Than Ropes Will Ever Do by Fiona Apple
8. The Seer by Swans
9. Born To Die by Lana Del Rey
10. Visions by Grimes
11. 2 by Mac DeMarco
12. Shields by Grizzly Bear
13. Blunderbuss by Jack White
14. Attack On Memory by Cloud Nothings
15. The 2nd Law by Muse
16. Celebration Rock by Japandroids
17. Swing Lo Magellan by Dirty Projectors
18. 'Allelujah! Don't Bend! Ascend! by Godspeed You! Black Emperor
19. Fear Fun by Father John Misty
20. Light Up Gold by Parquet Courts
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