CD Review // Oddisee
The Iceberg (Mello Music Group)
Amir Mohamed El Khalifa—Oddisee—released his 11th studio album, The Iceberg on Feb. 24. The Sudanese-American Muslim draws inspiration from the stressed political climate and his culture for his popular new album.
The Iceberg is intimate, personal, and sheds light into his life. Even at 32 years old, Oddisee feels faltered and scrutinized because of his culture.
“Things,” the most acclaimed track on the album, has some upbeat grooves and slides as a background to the powerful words of Oddisee: “So I’ve learned to be quiet, cause loud don’t always mean live/ You wanna rise, but don’t deserve to be fly.”
“You Grew Up” seems like the essence of Iceberg. Oddisee tells us a story about his white friend he had as a child, and how he noticed everyone, including himself, growing up in America. Oddisee tells us how people started blaming him and his family because of the way they looked. The thought and anxiety of assimilation is on the minds of many who feel foreign to the US In this track, Khalifa sings, “But things changed when his pops got laid off/ He blamed my father for the loss of his job/ He said immigrants robbed citizens jobs.” It’s an incredibly personal and relatable track, because it shows that even the best were discriminated against.
Oddisee is so incredibly talented. He uses The Iceberg as a way to channel his story and give listeners a glimpse into his life.