Machine Gun Kelly - Tickets to My Downfall Music Album Reviews

Machine Gun Kelly - Tickets to My Downfall Music Album Reviews
The motor-mouthed rapper’s latest album reboots him as an heir to the early-’00s pop-punk canon, with Travis Barker producing and playing drums. 

With his roguish blue-collar image and Hot Topic wardrobe, Machine Gun Kelly always seemed more lightweight than his self-serious rap music suggested. Over the course of four full-lengths and two EPs on Sean Combs’s Bad Boy Records, his audience didn’t grow up with him so much as shuffle listlessly alongside him, waiting for something interesting to happen. Despite flirtations with a more pop-driven sound, he always reverted to moody persecution narratives; he seemed neither aware of nor particularly interested in his place as a white rap star, save for the opportunity it afforded him to squabble with Eminem and make eyes at the elder rapper’s then-teenaged daughter. The motor-mouthed flow which once made Kelly a fixture at Apollo showcases was never in question, but—save for isolated guilty pleasures on 2015’s overblown General Admission and 2017’s schlocky bloom—he never had much to show for it.
Turns out, all he ever needed was Travis Barker in his corner. Tickets to My Downfall reboots MGK as an heir to the early-’00s pop-punk canon, with Barker producing and playing drums. Barker’s fingerprints are everywhere: most of the songs clock in under three minutes, replete with three-chord melodies, big hooks, and breakdown bridges, nestled within the same 85-to-110 bpm sweet spot as blink-182’s singles catalog. “concert for aliens” is the most faithful Enema of the State homage, with its extraterrestrial theme, pulsing Hoppus-ian bass track, and four-note guitar solo. MGK’s singing voice, which tended toward reedy when it wasn’t slathered in bloom’s vocal effects, brandishes a snarl that faintly recalls Deryck Whibley’s SoCal-by-way-of-MTV lilt.

Even the sugariest pop-punk confections occupy a lineage, one which can’t be donned as easily as a studded belt. But the authenticity equation on a record shaped by turn-of-the-century suburban mall soundtracks is different than the one Kelly’s used to as a rapper. In the way that blink’s smirking skate-punk insolence perfectly captured Clinton-era insouciance, Kelly’s mopier navel-gazing is suggestive of a generational attitude—had he arrived a few years later, it’s easy to imagine him finding his footing in the emo-rap explosion on Soundcloud. Unlike blink’s most recent effort NINE, which tried on a modern, synthetic sound in largely halfhearted fashion, Tickets to My Downfall embraces its source material without hedging its bets. “drunk face” chronicles the same cycle of drugs and heartbreak MGK’s been singing about for years, but in the context of a downtempo earworm it echoes American Hi-Fi more than Hopsin. To his everlasting credit, Kelly finally found both a genre and a producer as brazenly allergic to subtlety as he is.

Tickets to My Downfall is a genuine throwback to the post-9/11 gauze of TRL countdowns and Tony Hawk multiplayer. Halsey’s vocals soar on the angsty breakup jam “forget me too,” which might work as a show tune if it didn’t rock so hard. “bloody valentine” is a winningly bittersweet ballad anchored by a sober bassline, whereas the title track is practically operatic—following a dramatic acoustic intro, Barker’s drums lurch between a blistering pre-chorus and a half-time hook. The Iann Dior and blackbear collaborations are laced with light trap drums, making for minor deviations from the template.

The blackbear track “my ex’s best friend” is particularly instructive in terms of the fate MGK avoided with his well-timed pivot. A similarly brooding, tattooed Instagram ex-boyfriend, blackbear writes wallowing R&B from the perspective of the perpetually jilted lover; his vengefulness (“Look at this damage you did to me!” he wails on “my ex’s best friend”) makes him a deeply unsympathetic narrator. As recently as last summer’s “FLOOR 13,” Kelly elicited a comparable you’ll-miss-me-when-I’m-gone spite, taunting “Don’t cry at my funeral” like a sophomore who just coughed up his lunch money. Tickets to My Downfall’s finale “play this when i’m gone” shows the same fatalism, but MGK’s concern—crucially—lies with prospective survivors instead of his rivals. “You’re gonna cry, and baby, that’s all right,” Kelly sings over melancholic guitar strums. It’s more theatrical and more compassionate than his barbed journey-into-the-mind rap records: a win-win.

In a certain sense, Kelly’s rebirth as a pop-punk revivalist might be the ultimate form of fan service—the aesthetic is far more suitable for his diaristic instincts and Warped Tour following. Thematically, Tickets to My Downfall is hardly a departure from MGK’s past work, but the new surroundings lightens his music up considerably even amidst the hormones and histrionics. With Travis Barker on his side, he might win over skeptics accusing him of trend-hopping, but the best part of Downfall is that he doesn’t take the whole endeavor too seriously.
Share on Google Plus

About Wanni Arachchige Udara Madusanka Perera

Hey, I'm Perera! I will try to give you technology reviews(mobile,gadgets,smart watch & other technology things), Automobiles, News and entertainment for built up your knowledge.
Machine Gun Kelly - Tickets to My Downfall Music Album Reviews Machine Gun Kelly - Tickets to My Downfall Music Album Reviews Reviewed by Wanni Arachchige Udara Madusanka Perera on Wednesday, October 07, 2020 Rating:

0 comments:

Post a Comment