JFK is an emcee who seems like he’s perpetually on the verge of becoming unhinged. It’s a self-inflicted condition caused by the combination of his frantic, usually rapid-paced flow and his penchant for spitting about all the bad sh-t that happens in life (or death, as is often the case when he’s traversing the spiritual world’s subsurface as one half of Grayskul, the rapper’s well-established collaborative endeavor with fellow Oldominion cohort Onry Ozzborn). On JFK’s solo debut, Building Wings on the Way Down, the man also known as Ninjaface settles into a comfortable space (at least for him) composed of personal reflection, adept societal observations, and relatable relationship anecdotes. Based on JFK’s subject matter, and despite the album’s title, the rapper seems grounded here–in a good way.

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