Lil Yachty - Teenage Emotions
Lil Yachty may be the best representative for the idea that "parents just don't understand" on the scene today. While throngs of youths are enamoured with his breaking all the rules of hip hop and positivity, old school fans see him as taking a path that rap should not go down. Yet Yachty represents doing what the fuck you want, regardless of how out there that idea might seem. It is that teenage dilemma of defining who you are while the world is pushing for you to conform. Lil Yachty's alter ego, the "aggressive" rapper "Boat" makes an appearance on "RN Freestyle" and it is odd to say the least. The posture just does not feel right for Yachty especially when everything else He tends to do is about lightness. This album though is filled with contradictions, constantly saying one thing than in the next track saying the other. Yachty is somewhat known for taking shortcuts in his lyrics, siding with delivery more than substance. This will cause some songs to not make sense when read, but when you are singing at the top of your lungs or dancing in a club does sentence structure really matter? You'll find yourself bopping your head along to songs like "Harley" but then realize it is mostly just Yachty saying Harley 100 times. You have to wonder: is it a bad thing to be lyrically ankle deep, but deliver a great pop song? It's that question that you find yourself going back and forth on over and over while you listen to this record.
There are times here however where Yachty is clearly trying to go after the Hip Hop heads and fails miserably. "RN Freestyle" and "X-Men" both feel so forced like Yachty is desperate to prove his chops, but He doesn't have them. Yachty's section of "Better" is OK, but than the song takes a decided dancehall shift when Stefflon Don comes in and it sort of ruins whatever good vibes they had going. Rhyming "letter" and "better" about 300 times also doesn't do much for your enjoyment of the tune. Then the Diplo produced "Forever Young" feels like a youthful and exuberant Pop-Rap hit. We also have to get into the records length, because 21 tracks and an hour and 10 minutes is out of control. By the 12th song you have more or less got it but then you have to be subjected to another nine full tracks. Teenage Emotions becomes more of a spectacle to watch happen in front of you rather than an album to really enjoy. Yachty may be tapping in to some youth culture but it is unlikely much of this record is going to push through. Yachty still has plenty of time to course correct or change completely, we'll just have to keep watching.
6.0 out of 10