Out of all the rappers that comprise the so called “new wave” of hip hop, no other comes from so far out of left field as Lil Yachty. The Atlanta native burst onto the scene last year with his infectious hits “One Night” and “Minnesota,” both of which feature the woozy, whimsical style he’s so fond of, but with trap’s hard-edged bite. It’s this style that makes him unlike any other rapper out there, and though he’s gotten some criticism for being a ‘weirdo rapper’ and dumbing down the genre, he’s gotten a ton of fans thanks to his playful demeanor and self-proclaimed “King of the Teens” title. After releasing his debut mixtape Lil Boat in March earlier this year, Yachty signed with Quality Control and got an Apple Music deal; not bad for a 18-year-old. Now he’s back with Summer Songs 2, which has the young rapper adjusting to fame, addressing the haters and most importantly, having fun.
Perhaps the most immediate thing that strikes listeners when hearing Yachty is the auto-tuned, high pitched drawl he often employs. It’s one of those things that you’ll either love or hate, but it’s mesmorizing all the same. Songs like “Yeah Yeah”, “Why? (Interlude)” and “IDK” are as hypnotizing as they are catchy, both featuring the aforementioned hazy, synthy form of trap. However, just because the production is this way doesn’t mean Yachty’s purely relying on it. On the former, he yearns to his girl to be with him even though he messed up. On “Life Goes On,” he recruits Cook LaFlare for a motivational track, using their own modest upbringings to inspire others to reach for the stars and stay positive through the bad times, a theme Yachty often tries to implement into his music.
Yachty can still have fun though and spit with hellish intent when he wants to. On “Up Next 3,” he and G Herbo go crazy on the mic, delivering relentless bars touching on everything fame and money gets you, from diamonds to cars to designer clothes. “For Hot 97” has Yachty looking for revenge after getting roasted by the hosts of the popular rado show after flubbing a freestyle. “Stack so fat Ben Franklin like who is you foldin’/Whips so new got these coppers thinkin’ it’s stolen/So they pull me over and see that my teeth golden,” he furiously raps in triple time. “Shoot Out the Roof” has Lil Boat castigating his copycats, cultimating in an addictive hook that will have you shouting back, no matter how silly you might sound.
While the tape may not have the mainstream hits that Lil Boat had, each song is unique in the fact that they grab you and won’t let you go, whether it be the result of the loopy beats or Yachty’s tantalizing yelp. You may not like it, as his style is a bit of an acquired taste , but you have to respect his dedication to not only his eccentric craft but the legions of fans he’s acquired, which he addresses on final track “So Many People.” The song contains clips of fans praising him and his music. “You can’t really explain how great he is, like his music is just the best out there right now,” one fan explains. Taking the first thing he said into account, it really is hard to explain just how big Yachty has gotten over the past year. Is it because of his skill as an MC, or that he’s so bad it’s good, essentially making him a meme; Yachty himself said he doesn’t take rap seriously, so why should we? Whatever the case, he’s making it all look easy, and having a hell of a lot of fun doing it.