Whether you’re a fan of Machine Gun Kelly’s or not, there’s no arguing that he brings a certain level of energy to his music. The Cleveland rapper dropped his third studio album, bloom on Friday, May 12th, which features Quavo, Ty Dolla Sign and more.
While this album does have a slightly different tone than the last 2, it still does a good job at representing the rapper. A number of the tracks have tamer, less energetic beats than what we’re used to, but still scream “Cleveland native, chronic smoking, skater boy.”
Writing much of his own material, the rapper has often been known to rep his city in his music, with hits like Cleveland and ‘Til I Die, which have garnered an accumulative 75 million views on YouTube. This album is no different in that sense, with the track Golden Boy:
“Do you know how I’m regarded?
King of underground, King of Cleveland town
King of marijuana gardens.”
Growing up, the rapper moved around a lot, but eventually established himself in The Rock and Roll Capital of the World, so it’s no surprise that his influences come from more than just his hip-hop counterparts. On top of DMX and Eminem, the rapper has also cited Guns ‘N Roses and Blink-182 as some of his musical influences.
His love for rock and roll probably doesn’t come as a shock, as he’s sampled many rock songs in his own music. Over the course of his career, we’ve heard samples from the likes of Queen, Warren Zevon and Awolnation. His rendition of Awolnation’s Sail was a huge hit, bringing in over 76 million views on YouTube.
Wake and Bake is the second track on bloom, that starts with a smooth guitar riff, which matches the theme of the song perfectly. The song closes with a solid, 43 second guitar solo, and was produced by H*Money and EV. H*Money, who helped produce 2 other songs on the album, has had a creatively ubiquitous career, having worked alongside Maroon 5, Mary J. Blige, Jennifer Hudson and Chris Brown.
On top of repping his city, the rapper has always been open about his “extracurricular habits.” The eleventh song on the album, titled Rehab, addresses this topic in a different way than we’re used to hearing from the rapper. It starts with a soft acoustic intro, matched with equally soft vocals. It has a melancholy tone to it, which seems to be a theme across the whole album.
The next track, Let You Go, has a similar vibe as Rehab, but talks about an old relationship that he needs to let go of. The rapper tweeted about this song back in April, announcing that he had also played the guitar for the track himself.
The album contains a total of 13 tracks, each track bringing something a little different to the table. It’s various writers, producers and featured artists definitely put in the work, to make sure listeners were experiencing something a little different than what MGK has ever given us before.
Could the rapper be pulling a “Yelawolf,” who’s 2015 album Love Story barely qualifies as rap music? Doubtful, in this case. Nonetheless, the album is definitely worth scooping up, and is currently available on Spotify and iTunes.