Mac Miller – Macadelic | Mixtape Review

With the subcategory of ‘teen rap’ now bursting with numerous young talents, the question now remains as to which of the 21-and-under prodigies has the potential to go beyond their adolescent fanbase and appeal to the grown folk. Already making huge movements for a youngster who only graduated from High school not too long ago Pittsburgh’s Mac Miller has already shown promise, in that his current musical teen fodder still carries enough weight for older heads to dig.

Regardless of his youth-embracing rhymes, the independent rapper has produced a number of ’90s reminiscent mixtapes, won the respect of many leading rap figures and had his debut studio album chart at number one in the Billboard 200 without a major label backing. Offering a thank you to his notorious die-hard fans, the free for download Macadelic sports not only Mac Miller on original beats but brings on board a superstar lineup to ensure this costless project doesn’t go by unnoticed.

Fresh off the success of his Blue Slide Park album, Mac Miller ensures his next musical endeavour doesn’t lose the energy exhibited on the chart topping debut. “Desperado” finds Miller again rhyming with bravado, aided by a thumping I.D. Labs production. A Hip Hip enthusiast by nature, Mac Miller’s Macadelic mixtape is provided with boom bap, soul sampling instrumentals aplenty taking you back to the mid 1990s – an era which undeniably has influenced his material.

Still as hedonistic as ever, Mac again returns to the world of partying, drug consumption and having fun for his lyrical inspiration. “Vitamins” (produced again by I.D. Labs), as expected, is about the Rostrum Records artist’s experience when dabbling in various substances. The 2011 XXL Freshman tries his hand at the rough, club inspired “Loud,” gets “Ignorant” with Harlem’s Cam’ron and hires Lex Luger to help him address his adventurous ways with women alongside Juicy J on “Lucky Ass Bitch.”

Although a step away from the slacker/jock persona seen on his previous material, Mac Miller doesn’t fully capture the essence of this new found material, which others have been successful with. It’s when the rapper turns to his more lazy, carefree and somewhat conscious state that “Macadelic” finds its strengths. Clearly expressing his fears and apprehensions of superstardom on “Thoughts From A Balcony”, Miller’s honest outpouring is a chilled, enjoyable listen.

Big collaborations are on hand and their presence does boost the quality of the material they appear on. Lil Wayne‘s sleepy drawl features on the impressive “The Question,” whereas TDE’s Kendrick Lamar adds more diary like thoughts to the reflective “Fight The Feeling” which also features Iman Omari. Both rappers do show the gulf between themselves and Mac Miller in terms of performance, yet the young superstar doesn’t lose any props or credentials; in fact, Miller has somewhat improved in his lyricism and performance, sounding more assured when rhyming rather than stutter-y as he has at times previously.

Conceptually he excels above his immediate competition, working with producers and rappers who help him reach another level musically. Getting lost in the oceanic instrumental of enigmatic producer Clams Casino “Angels (When She Shuts Her Eyes)” will appeal to those after a more in depth score, “Clarity” is soft and haunting atmosphere and the closing “Fuck em All” sends out a message of putting all the negativity behind him and focusing on the bigger prize. Still finding time to represent for the underground on the excellent “America” co-starring the West Coast’s Casey Veggies and emerging rap sensation Joey Bada$$, the shadowy production allows the trio to unleash raw, splintered, head-nodding raps.

Macadelic is ultimately the mixtape which many ‘purer’ rap fans would have wished were his debut album. Moving away from cheesy samples and playful verses on Blue Slide Park, Mac Miller’s latest release is filled with a variety of edgier productions and tighter rhymes which affirm his Hip Hop side hasn’t been lost in his transformation to superstar. Whilst the presence of more established names may shine a more credible light on the youngster, without question the kid possesses enough knowledge and talent to execute dope material without reliance on lyrical assistance. Macadelic is the project which should set the record straight on any doubts of Miller’s ability to drop some audio dopeness.

DOWNLOAD: Mac Miller – Macadelic Mixtape

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