The long awaited album by Robb Bank$ has finally arrived. While the album serves to please the fans that have been asking for it for years, Robb manages to create a reintroduction of himself for newcomers. Falconia succeeds in being a passion project born out of a decade of work, touching base on multiple eras in the ever-changing hip hop landscape. Yet at the same time, finds a way to be one of his most personal projects to date.
A good portion of the project is bangers, songs like “I WANNA ROCK” & “HIM JONG-UN” are bass heavy packed out aggressive yet clear bars. These songs newer fans may be familiar with, as that’s the newer style he’s been running with like on projects such as Tha Leak 2, but he adds a slight change to his flow that varies from previous projects. He adds this newer level of aggression, as if growling the bars, which is a style that hasn’t shown as much as it does on this project. Even though he’s been active since the early 2010s, he has still managed to push himself in new & inventive ways.
Interestingly, while the album manages to stay modern in its sound overall, it is able to cover so many different sound changes that have happened in hip hop. The outro of “SEX THERAPY” utilizes those glitch effects that made songs like “2phoneshawty” some of the most interesting in the underground. “May I” captures that sound that made the Soundcloud scene one of the most creative movements, using the late XXXTENTACION wild youthful energy & Ski Mask The Slump God’s chopper-like flow. Featuring solidified legends such as Sonny Digital & newer greats such as Oogiemane, he captures so many eras all within the same album.
Robb Bank$, Ski Mask The Slump God & XXXTENTACION – MAY I
While the album has these bangers that truly make it an enjoyable listen, the album at its core is about love. On multiple songs, Robb tears down the walls that surround himself & opens about his relationship troubles, and successes. The album’s centerpiece is easily “Conflict / Resolution,” which feels like a call back to his older slower paced story telling style. On this song he deals with the aftermath of a fallen relationship, one that’s faults fall on both sides of the relationship.
After a short interlude using Robb’s love of the anime Berserk to tie the story further together, it leads into the “Resolution” that highlights the flaws & toxicity of each other. Despite being fully aware of these imperfections, he is not willing to go on further because that’s what made him feel whole. With the guitar weaving throughout the beat, its easily one of his most cinematic tracks in quite awhile.
Flaws in a relationship aren’t the main focus of the album though, as songs like “LET’S GET MARRIED” show the hopeful sides of one. Robb drops everything in the world to focus on the person that matters most in his life, and showing the thrill of the chase of a real love. It almost seems as a healing of “Conflict / Resolution,” where by the end of the song he recognizes the hurt from his past loves, and is ready for a brand new life with a significant other.
LET’S GET MARRIED
His skills of capturing the good & bad of a relationship are fantastic on this album, but he also manages to shine light on his personal life within fleeting moments. “SEX THERAPY” shows him hiding issues within his sex life despite having personal issues going on, on top of managing the relationship that is falling apart at the seams. “LONG KISS GOODNIGHT” winds up being the most personal, separating from the love life entirely & letting his emotions run. With a Sade sample elevating the song, Robb highlights his erratic feelings & happiness to still be here. He remembers the ones that had passed in an heartful performance, and the ones that held him up throughout it all.
Its hard to call this album his best, considering his lengthy & stylistically different discography, but its easy to call this his most balanced album yet. There feels like a bit of everything here for everyone, there’s plenty of lighter songs here like “LIFTED” without feeling too different from previous material. He manages to do seemingly any sound without going too far off the path he’s already built, instead creating another extension of it. It may not be an album of wall to wall bangers, but its an album that highlights every possible skill Robb possesses.