Kendrick Lamar has compared recording his new album to having therapy.

The 28-year-old rapper released his third record To Pimp a Butterfly earlier this year. And for the star, it is a true reflection of where he is at in his life and how he does his best to deal with his success.

“It’s really about me trying to balance these worlds – where I used to be and where I am today – from all different angles,” he told British newspaper The Observer. “This album was therapy for me. I was looking at myself in the mirror and trying to figure out who I really am.”

Kendrick has been passionate about music from a young age and after releasing a number of mixtapes, his debut album hit the charts in 2011. His follow up album Good Kid, M.A.A.D City was critically acclaimed and received seven Grammy nominations. His rise to superstardom is a world away from his childhood in Compton, California.

“When you enter the music industry, your life basically starts over,” he continued. “I’m still young and still learning.”

With his third release, Kendrick was able to go one better than his previous album and win two Grammy’s at the 2015 ceremony for the record’s first single i. Critics have called the disc one of the greatest American hip hop albums of all time, and while the star is modest about such claims, he believes its success lies in him speaking from the heart about issues that are important to him.

“It’s really just about integrity. We all like to have fun. I like to have fun, too. But where do you stop and say, ‘You know what? There’s actually some real sh*t going on out there that people can relate to more than any singalong I can bring to the table,’” he said.