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Mac Miller faces a new man in the mirror on GO:OD AM. The Pittsburgh MC is soundly more mature than he’s been on past efforts. His existential crisis from Watching Movies With The Sounds is replaced with a man who has a grip on where his life is and where life is going – arms stretched, yawning throughout the album. The reason for this? Mac has come clean about the negative effects of his past drug use. He’s clean now, save the weed references.
The music is a direct reflection of this narrative. You’re just happy to see him doing good after fearing that the worst, the “27 Club,” which includes the likes of Amy Winehouse, Kurt Cobain, and Jimi Hendrix. Mac constantly reminds us of what could have transpired had he continued on a destructive path. Interspersed amongst his clean up party are updates on what has been going on in his life otherwise with rhymes about his success and the pleasures it’s brought into his life.
As an artist Mac doesn’t show much growth from his Watching Movies With The Sound Off peak, but it’s a step up from the injury season that was his Faces mixtape. He’s back to doing things that he does best. The production is safe and the rhyming is as anticipated. There are standout moments where he does deviate from his standard formula and sees some success. The aggressive “When In Rome” is a certified banger and the second half of the thoughtful “Perfect Circle/Godspeed” is captivating. The album’s collective low are the songs that will go unsung. Many of the songs lack a differentiating identity so if you heard one you’ll probably hear four just like it.
In his return, Mac Miller does enough to keep his seat at the table, but that may be it. As one of the few mentioned in Kendrick Lamar‘s “Control” verse you may want something with a little more significance. An optimist will hope that GO:OD AM is just a new beginning. All in all, it’s just good to see that Mac is doing okay.