Starting off with 20 seconds of bass and deep sounds, “The Art of Peer Pressure” takes listener deep into the mind of Kendrick Lamar. Quickly, Lamar starts to paint a perfectly detailed picture of the situation he’s in: the homies he’s rolling with, the smell on their clothes, what they’re drinking, what he’s wearing, and even what they’re listening to (Young Jeezy). In fact, this song takes place in the span of him and his homies listening to Jeezy’s first mixtape T.U.I.
The beat is simple. There is a baseline with a small drum loop that drives the song; but the production as a whole is turned down a notch so as to let him tell the greater tale with his well crafted verses. Simply put, they are masterful. “The Art of Peer Pressure” has a simple, repetitive hook that in a way pokes fun at how repetitive and simple the problems we deal with on a daily basis.
The last few lines are where it’s all at — uber simple and redundant — with Lamar spitting “We made a right/ then made a left/ then made a right/ then made a left/ we were just circling life.” Directionless in life.
Kendrick Lamar – “The Art of Peer Pressure”