Headliner: Mac Miller
Representing: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Real Spit: How do you follow up a #1 independent album and a sold-out tour? If you're Mac Miller, you treat your fans to a free mixtape.
On Friday (March 23) the Pittsburgh spitter dropped Macadelic, a trippy ride through the psyche of a fun-loving MC who is adept at expressing his innermost feelings.
"It's like the story of someone who is growing up, trying to figure out who he is and trying to figure out what he's supposed to do in the world and how he's gonna change it," Mac told Mixtape Daily. "I think it's a great piece because it's a great part of my career, it's a great time right now and I feel like I been making mixtapes for five years, so this one is very special to me."
Over the thudding, bass-rattling sound bed of "Amnesia," Mac cautiously drowns his crumbling love life in a cloudy codeine cup. "This is real girl, don't be scared, it's only fair/ I warn you love's a drug that can kill you," he hazily raps.
The love-as-a-drug theme continues on "Vitamins." Over a dreamy Big Jerm beat, Mac poetically recalls an addictive lovemaking session that leaves him all out of sorts in the aftermath. Then with foggy vocals, Miller seeks comfort for his growing pains on "Clarity."
"It's a lot different from anything I've ever done," Mac told MTV News backstage at the mtvU Woodies earlier this month. "In my past projects, I always thought about them a lot, like, 'Where are the party jams? Where are the jams that are fun?' "
Apparently Mac's days aren't always soundtracked by "Donald Trump" and "Party on Fifth Ave." Throughout the tape the Blue Slide Park rapper continually contemplates his life's purpose in the face of his growing fame. "Sometimes I wonder who the f--- I am," Mac rhymes at the start of "The Question."
The self-reflecting tune gets quite the boost from Young Money boss Lil Wayne, who makes a surprise appearance at the end of the track. Weezy spits a free-associative verse in which he affectionately shouts out his new machine gun, which he strangely compares to a newborn baby.
Macadelic isn't completely pensive, though; there is the Cam'ron-assisted "Ignorant," which has Miller rapping about his gold Rolex and weed habits alongside the Dipset captain. "Lucky Ass Bitch" is another winner, thanks to producer Lex Luger's kinetic bounce and Juicy J's classic vocal contribution. On "Desperado," Mac flexes his MC muscle, with the 20-year-old rhyme-slinger spitting some of his best rhymes over ID Labs' Wild West-inspired production. In short, Macadelic has something for everyone.
"I was trying to make a complete project, but on this project, all I wanted to do is just say what was on my mind," he said. "I just worried about saying what I wanted to say, and I felt like there were a lot of things that I wanted to get off my chest, and this mixtape was the way to do it."
Joints to Check For:
"Vitamins": "The concept is that this drug is actually love. It's a drug that I'm taking, so all the emotions and the feelings that are coming from this said drug are actually coming from love."
"Ignorant": "I was in Harlem because I'm a huge Big L fan. And Cam hit me, he saw me Instagramming pictures, he said, 'What are you doin' in Harlem?' I said, 'Chillin'.' And he said 'Alright, I'm about to have someone come get you.' So I went over to his crib, we got in the studio."
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