Context – not listening to NAILS
I had a friend introduce me to XXXTENTACION a while ago and I forgot to blog about it because I did something else that day instead. Wish I knew what it was. That first project I heard, Revenge, had something going on. It was grimy in a way I thought was reserved for Death Grips, it was aggressive in a way I thought only white boys screamed about in the suburbs, and there seemed to be something worth polishing and developing there. Thinking specifically of songs like “Look at Me” and “YuNg BrAtZ”, which certainly embody these qualities.
Although now that I’m re-listening to some tracks off that album, I realize that this Cloud Rap, which is a term I’ve heard thrown around guys like this and Lil Peep, is more the direction I should have expected from him.
Which is a bummer, because those two aforementioned tracks are the fucking bomb. I love that shit. I wish someone besides Death Grips was doing it, or at least that I knew who those guys were. I’m sure they exist, somewhere in the world.
Instead I get this floaty, whiny, abstract shit. And I only say abstract because my brain disconnects before it can fully engage. It’s like everything I dislike about Lil Uzi Vert but without any of the qualities that initially draw me into that Lean shit in the first place.
I can’t think of a bigger let down this year, I had such high hopes for this guy. Maybe he rushed this project and played to what he thought were his strengths. I can only hope that instead he goes the other direction and becomes the cannibal I know he can be. He could straight gnaw motherfuckers’ faces off with that other side of himself that he doesn’t seem to want to highlight.
Bummer with a capital everything.