San Diego

‘Wake Up' With the Lyrical Groove

The Lyrical Groove rework Jordan Peele's 2017 film "Get Out" for their new video

There's the old adage that art imitates life and although that may be true, if we extend the idea beyond cliche, sometimes art also imitates art.

Such is the case with San Diego-based band the Lyrical Groove and their latest video "Wake Up," a clever re-working of Jordan Peele's Oscar-nominated 2017 debut film "Get Out."

As a song, it's a melodic call to action imploring listeners to "put some focus" in their cups with frontman Kendrick Dial running through a series of verses, the first highlighting society's ills ("Glass ceilings, classism, day labor, sharecropper / Drug lords, warlords, mafia, mobsters") before ending his last with a bit of optimism by offering solutions to help us out of our collective sunken place.

Visually, "Wake Up" recasts Chris Washington (the main character in "Get Out") as a family of four who move through mundane pursuits like cooking, cleaning, and watching TV, all while semiconscious, half asleep -- hypnotized.

They're textbook automatons, a metaphor for us at our least aware, but through Dial's positive prodding, not to mention the band's electricity, they eventually come to.

And that's the essence of the single, to revive the walking dead. Now, while that may read as overbearing or even heavy-handed, as often happens with "message" music, it doesn't apply here.

Thankfully, the group's unassuming nature lends itself to a certain down-home charm. And it's that sense of modesty which results in an even-keeled single, one with enough bounce to keep audiences dancing and just enough substance to make them think.

J. Smith, aka 1019, is a San Diego native, rap fan and one half of the rap duo Parker & the Numberman. You can follow him on Instagram at 1019_the_numberman or on Twitter

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