WEGL's Weekly Picks March 22-29
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This upcoming June will be the sixth anniversary of what I personally think is one of the funniest moments in all of hip hop. In 2017, Lil Yachty had to get on Instagram and publicly apologize for how utterly terrible his debut album was. With unbearable and low effort projects like Teenage Emotions and Michigan Boat Boy, it seemed like Lil Yachty’s career was slowly and steadily tanking, especially when you consider that it began around the peak of the SoundCloud era. Given that most budding artists from this time have careers which slowly devolved into hollow shells of their past iconography, it seemed as if Yachty was doomed to stray down this path. Now take in every bit of information I just said. Consider that we’re talking about a man who has hit rock bottom multiple times as a musician, to the point where a good chunk of people recognize him for his internet personality rather than his actual music. Would you believe me if I told you he created one of the best rock albums of the 2020’s? If you don’t, you should go ahead and listen to his newest album because Let’s Start Here is showing us a side of Yachty that we’ve never seen executed before in music. His die hard fans already knew that he took a liking to artists such as Tame Impala and Pink Floyd, yet his pop rap dominated discography showed no sign of his artistic direction progressing into psychedelic rock. However, Let’s Start Here has been out for about two weeks and it’s already unanimously agreed that this is his best piece of work. Based on first impressions of the album you might think that it would tend to drag due to its nearly hour long runtime, but the impeccable sequencing of Let’s Start Here will keep you engaged for the entire fifty seven minutes. The ratio of chiller songs to more energetic ones is balanced beautifully throughout the track list, and the sheer quality in the production from track to track takes the listener on a roller coaster of emotions. It begins with the "BLACK seminole.," a seven minute long track with enchanting vocals and mesmerizing chords. After this grandiose intro, the listener is met with the "ride-" and "running out of time," two stellar songs that calm down the overall energy of the album to a more relaxed sound. These first few songs pretty much demonstrate how the album is structured entirely. Now I will admit that not every song on Let’s Start Here is a masterpiece as there are a couple of bland moments sprinkled throughout the track list, however the climaxes of this project completely nullify them.
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When I listened to this record I made a promise to myself that my outlook on it wouldn’t be biased or skewed by previous opinions I’ve had of the Black Eyed Peas, and that I would give my honest standpoint of the art itself. With that in mind, ELEVATION is potentially the worst album of the year. I like to think of The Black Eyed Peas as that one popular Chad that every high school has. They peak for a crisp three to four years before moving on to greater things, only to realize that their popularity has quickly died. So, in order to salvage their relevance, they return to the scene that once made them popular every now and then to “check up on things,” only to find that everyone has long moved past them. This LP is so corporate safe, it’s hard to find any redeeming quality about the music itself.