Juice WRLD - Fighting Demons Music Album Reviews

Juice WRLD - Fighting Demons Music Album Reviews
Juice WRLD’s second posthumous album attempts to be more of the same, highlighting the best and worst qualities of a generational talent gone too soon.

The most affecting part of the first annual Juice WRLD Day celebration was when his former DJ, Mike P, went out into the crowd to talk to fans about how the late Chicago rapper changed their lives. They said they discovered Juice in high school and credit him for helping them overcome depression and mental illness. One fan showed off a tattoo of lyrics to the song “Life’s a Mess” on her arm. Several were on the verge of tears while sharing their memories. “Whenever I need a high, all I need is to play some Juice WRLD,” one said as the crowd of thousands erupted.

Though he’d been creating music since at least 2015, the impact Juice left on the world within only a year and a half—his breakout single “Lucid Dreams” debuted on May 4, 2018, and he passed away from an overdose on December 8, 2019—is nothing short of remarkable. He utilized rap, pop-punk, and emo just as that combination became the go-to formula for a new generation of rising SoundCloud stars. His songs were often juvenile but always honest; they were the nexus for his raw unfiltered emotion.

The universal appeal of Juice WRLD’s music never came at the expense of abandoning his rap roots or rebranding himself as an artist. The reverence he paid to the struggles that he and his fans endured has persisted in the music released since his death. 2020’s Legends Never Die largely avoided the pitfalls of the average posthumous rap album: Most songs used felt as close to complete as possible, features were kept to a minimum, and its promotion was tame and respectful. Fighting Demons—the second posthumous Juice album—can’t necessarily claim that third part, since its release is tied to both an Amazon-sponsored concert and an HBO documentary. But musically, Demons is attempting to be more of the same, highlighting the best and worst qualities of a generational talent gone too soon.

Demons was culled from the same pool of thousands of intense and deeply personal songs Juice recorded before his death. His voice is expansive and tumbles through melodies and raps about life passing him by in a haze of drugs, suicidal thoughts, and thoughts of living forever through his own reckless actions. At one point, on “Already Dead,” he admits his fans and his music are the only things keeping him alive. It never becomes any less harsh or challenging to hear Juice exorcise these demons, and there’s value in the way his bluntness continues to connect with listeners. At its best, on songs like “Wandered to LA” and “Doom,” the hurt feels close, like you can touch it. At its worst, moments can become bland (“Feline”) or descend into punchline silliness that doesn’t suit the heaviness of the material (“From My Window”). None of the songs sound like demos scraped from the bottom of the barrel, but there’s little connecting them to each other outside of the fact that they were previously unreleased.

Both Legends and Demons were put together by his estate and collaborators after he passed, but Legends was a well-defined statement about Juice’s legacy; its intent and purpose were clear. For all the pomp and circumstance, Demons feels like little more than a collection of songs put together for its own sake. The songs sound complete but there’s no rhyme or reason to their sequencing. The few features are solid—Justin Bieber’s coda on “Wandered to LA” and BTS member Suga’s verse on “Girl of My Dreams” being clear standouts—but unnecessary, names tacked onto an old vision board. No individual song tarnishes Juice’s reputation, but there’s no defining moment—no crazy posthumous verse or unearthed profundity about Juice as a person—to latch onto, either.

You can fill a posthumous album with good songs, but if there’s no reason for it to exist, then its only purpose is to sell an image. Mac Miller’s Circles was at least a companion piece to 2018’s Swimming that he was actively working on before his sudden death. Ditto the late Philadelphia rapper Chynna, whose very solid posthumous album drug opera went overlooked last year. Those albums had purpose and vision. Fighting Demons is too polished to be considered a total flub and its heart is in the right place, but it’s difficult to look at it as anything more than another product falling off a long assembly line powered by dead rappers.

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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.
Juice WRLD - Fighting Demons Music Album Reviews Juice WRLD - Fighting Demons Music Album Reviews Reviewed by Wanni Arachchige Udara Madusanka Perera on December 27, 2021 Rating: 5


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