Spectator Sing Along Power Hour

Lil Yachty’s new album is a conventional approach to an unconventional style of music



The AI-generated cover of the album.

On Jan. 27, Lil Yachty released his new album, “Let’s Start Here.”

Miles Parks McCollum was born on Aug. 27, 1997, in Marbleton, Georgia. After moving to New York, he broke into the rap scene under the name Lil Yachty. 

According to allmusic.com, his come-up started in 2015 with his SoundCloud single “One Night.” McCollum proceeded to model for Kanye West’s Yeezy Season 3, one month before the debut of his first mixtape “Lil Boat,” in March of 2016.

Lil Yachty ventured into the world of alternative, psychedelic rock, as opposed to the trap and mumble rap sound he was previously known for. In the process, he sought out lyrical and production advice from renowned indie artists. 

Magdelena Bay, Jacob Portrait and Justin Raisen were among the artists who received production credits on the album. Alex G, Mac DeMarco and Ben Goldwasser were also recognized as lyricists, according to Rolling Stone

During an interview with Complex, Lil Yachty also cited Pink Floyd’s “Dark Side of the Moon” as one of his main inspirations. 

His desire to be taken seriously manifests itself throughout the album, with maturation being one of its defining themes.

The album begins with a six-minute-long opening track called “the BLACK Seminole.” According to Lil Yachty, this track is meant to sound like a scene in a Quentin Tarantino film. 

As the album continues, the tracks cover the search for a sense of belonging, love and dealing with failure. 

In the album’s fifth track, “:(failure(:,” Lil Yachty gives a stream-of-consciousness monologue about the experiences of rapidly gaining fame and success, as well as backlash and controversy. This was seen as one of the most unique tracks on the album. 

Despite Lil Yachty’s evident passion for this new style of music, fans had mixed opinions. Lil Yachty has been a polarizing artist in the past, with some claiming he “ruined hip hop.” His unexpected approach to his new music has left listeners conflicted, according to Pitchfork.

Most listeners view this project as a new era for the rapper and commend his versatility. According to Pitchfork, his vocals were widely praised as the characteristic that set the album apart from other artists like Bruno Mars or James Brown. 

Lil Yachty also included samples and features that were praised for their fruitful additions to the music, according to Rolling Stone

Other listeners think Lil Yachty’s voyage into the psychedelic rock genre was done to paint Lil Yachty in a new light, following his controversies. 

According to Pitchfork, they believe that, although this album veers from the bubblegum rap he made in the past, the album still takes a conventional approach to an unconventional style of music. 

Without his vocals, the digestible, pitch-perfect album clings to safety and leaves something to be desired. 

Ultimately, “Let’s Start Here.” was made to appeal to the masses, and that’s what it did. Overall, critics and fans raved about this curveball album and its intense range of sounds and content matter. 

It’s hard to say what Lil Yachty has in store for the rest of his career, but he used “Let’s Start Here.” as an opportunity to showcase his wide range of musical capabilities and interests. 

Allessi can be reached at [email protected].