Mac Miller (Larry Lovestein & The Velvet Revival) - You
Record Label: Self-Released
Release Date: November 11, 2012
Mac Miller's style of infectious fratboy rap is no well-kept secret. Having blown up before 2011 and essentially taking the year down with him and his debut full-length Blue Slide Park, it was weird to expect anything besides big beats and bigger hits from the Pittsburgh rapper this year…which is exactly why You is going to turn heads. Completely thrown out of left field (even after the experimentally sound Macadelic mixtape), You is a five-song venture into Miller’s alter ego, Larry Lovestein with his band The Velvet Revival, and an apparent newly found interest in jazz. You contains absolutely no rapping. The result of this can be both relaxing and polarizing- Life Can Wait” begins with some offset distortion and vocal samples from Larry Lovestein himself, until the snares kick in…and never stop.
This is what makes You a tough listen to categorize- it may not be particularly well-rounded, but by no means is it a bad EP. Throughout five songs of light snare, synthesizer and smokey crooning, Miller creates some genuine, romantic tunes that sound...well, nice. Nice is the best word I can use to describe listening to You. The songs, unfortunately, just aren’t experienced enough to stay memorable. “Love Affair” kicks back with lyrics “Raindrops make me feel romantic/let’s run away, sail away to the Atlantic”, a perfect sample of how the entire EP is written. It makes me curious as to what has changed in the world of Mac that we once knew of in the likes of Best Day Ever and KIDS. Instrumental “A Moment 4 Jazz” includes several solos revolving around xylophone and brass, while “Suspicions” picks up the familiar tone at a quicker pace. The title track closes out the album with Larry Lovestein’s final dialogue, and get this- almost an entire five minutes of falsettos from Mac Miller. Call it novelty, call it an honest attempt at jazz, or whatever you’d like, but one thing is certain- You is successful in the sense that is is experimental, and it should be compelling to see where Cam Rellim goes from here.