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Yung Bleu - Moon Boy Music Album Reviews

Yung Bleu - Moon Boy Music Album Reviews
The Mobile, Alabama rapper’s debut album is weighed down by streaming bait, but thankfully it does include a handful of his highest highs.

There are a shit ton of rappers from the collection of thriving rap scenes in the Deep South solemnly singing about their grief, heartbreak, and tough upbringing over melancholy guitar and piano loops—I understand if you’re overwhelmed. Mobile, Alabama’s Yung Bleu is yet another, but he’s found a sweet spot amid the trendy sound. A deep dive into his catalog of mixtapes (see: the Investments series and Bleu Vandross trilogy) reveals that Bleu has built on a foundation laid by staples of the last decade or so of introspective Southern hip-hop: Like Starlito, his writing is often a self-examination of the fears, trauma, and racism he wishes he could forget; his ability to convey warmth when singing about violence might bring to mind Kevin Gates; he can craft a hook with the careful precision of his mentor Boosie. These layers have turned Bleu into one of the scene’s most obvious stars, so much so that at the end of last year, Drake hopped on the remix to Bleu’s take-me-back-anthem “You’re Mines Still,” which has been on an endless radio loop for months.

Bleu’s debut album Moon Boy is complicated, though. He’s a talented rapper who merges the confessional-like detail of his rap inspirations with soulful melodies that sound like he should join his local church’s choir, but also, he really wants to be a streaming juggernaut. With that, comes an uneven listening experience. Moon Boy is a reflection of the current popular rap landscape, where albums aren’t made to be consumed as a whole but instead for fans to sort through and playlist their favorites. This thought process has been amplified by streaming: Just ignore the songs that you don’t like, it’s not as if you paid 20 dollars for it. But I can’t quite do that. Am I supposed to pretend that “Unforgiving,” an extremely dull collaboration with Davido that feels more like a business deal than anything else, doesn’t exist? Or what about the whiny love drunk coos of “Ghetto Love Birds” alongside A Boogie Wit da Hoodie? Or the flat-sounding piano beats of “Dark Clouds” and “Angels Never Cry” designed to melt into any playlist? Or Chris Brown continuing to torment the music world with hooks that sound like they were recorded in the AIM away message era?

Moon Boy is weighed down by streaming bait, but thankfully it does include a handful of Bleu’s highest highs. It’s compelling how easily he can switch between tones, as the project seesaws between old war stories filled with agony and intimate ballads about love and the pain love brings. It works because Bleu is equally comfortable on both sides of that spectrum. He can carry sweet-sounding duets with H.E.R. and Kehlani and then use a weathered delivery to contemplate his past over a downbeat instrumental. He lilts, “And we come from duckin’ hundred round drums/And the school system treat us like we dumb/That’s why I’m in the hallway/Eighth grade, I was trappin’ in the hallway,” on the intensely personal yet self-effacing “Die Under the Moon.” Similarly, on the Jeezy-assisted “Shoe Box,” his writing is concise, emotional, and somehow still catchy.

Yet it’s not enough. I know, it’s hard to argue with success, and Moon Boy will inevitably rake in more numbers than Bleu ever has, but this is not a review of financial achievements; it’s of an entire project. Albums should be more than playlist fodder, but complete bodies of work that make you want to soak in and live with them. Yung Bleu is one of the premier voices of an exciting regional rap scene. To want him to live up to that is okay.
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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.
Yung Bleu - Moon Boy Music Album Reviews Yung Bleu - Moon Boy Music Album Reviews Reviewed by Wanni Arachchige Udara Madusanka Perera on Thursday, August 05, 2021 Rating: 5

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