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Mac Miller, Macadelic

“Hundred thousand haters writin’ bout my jams/Want a number one independent album? I’m your man,” Mac Miller raps on his new mixtape’s first proper song, “Desperado.” Both clauses are true, and both are crucial to the makeup of Macadelic. In just the last year, the Pittsburgh rapper has propelled himself from buzzed about upstart to the first indie rapper to hit No. 1 on Billboard in over a decade and a half; from a wide-eyed teenager to one of the most marketable brands in the game.

With all his success, Mac Miller still can’t even legally buy a drink at the bar. On one hand, the accomplishments have made the youth easy to overlook; on the other, intentionally or not, he’s kept that youth in the forefront, with music that’s often viewed as overly bubbly or elementary. Though commercially impactful, Mac’s debut, Blue Slide Park, was chopped down by many critics, slighted for representing the very same youthful exuberance that positioned him with a devoted enough fanbase to top the charts. But he’s still a kid, and some of the negative words seemed to have hit home. Macadelic, in many ways, is a response to them.

The mixtape’s finest moments come when Mac isn’t in the upbeat mood that most are used to, but instead becomes contemplative and even unsure. “The Question,” featuring Lil Wayne, may be the tape’s best song—and it’s not because of Weezy (who, granted, does shine during the free-flowing final verse). The track sets the listener into a trance, with its repetition and tempo, as the 2011 XXL Freshman kicks cliches but allows them to come across with authenticity and relatability. He admits, “Sometimes I wonder who the fuck I am,” and then questions “What am I doing here?” and “Do we ever get to know the truth?”

“Clarity,” too, is a bit more dark and uncertain than the Rostrum Records rapper typically comes off, but it shows maturation as an artist and person. The vulnerability continues on “America,” where he says, “Pain a funny thing when you can’t figure out the source.”

“Thoughts From A Balcony,” produced by “Donald Trump”-creator Sap, is a clear deviation from Mac’s biggest hit. “Said I’ll make it big when everybody know me/Well, I made it big and everybody phony,” he laments on the bluesy jam, with its hook wondering, “All we got is memories, so what the fuck is time?” But he’s able to weave in some underlying positivity, as just a few lines later, he raps, “Go ’head, judge me, hate cost money, but this love free.”

There are fun moments here, too. “Loud” should be recognized as Mac’s best party song to date, while “Ignorant,” featuring Cam’ron, again displays the unlikely chemistry of the two Big L disciples, and the Juicy J collaboration “Lucky Ass Bitch” is addictive.

The other friends that come along also add to the experience, as Kendrick Lamar (“Fight The Feeling”) and Casey Veggies (“America”) display their lyrical firepower, and Sir Michael Rocks (“Aliens Fighting Robots”) is as smooth as ever. The production is lush, airy, and ethereal, as ID Labs, Clams Casino and Ritz Reynolds, among others, offer the proper sonic set to parallel Mac’s moods.

There’s an element of irony with Macadelic: By making a tape rooted in saying, ‘Forget what people think, I’m gonna continue to do me,’ Mac Miller is managing to buck some of the criticisms that have been leveled in his direction. He’s becoming more three-dimensional, revealing depth while not abandoning what got him here. The honeymoon with fame and riches is already over, it seems (though be sure, he’s still enjoying himself). That may not be great for Mac, but it’s a already helped his music. —Adam Fleischer (@AdamXXL)

  • Matt Coogan

    I def think the lyrics should be rated higher but everything else is on point

  • Fiyer

    this gets an L for lyrics but Taylor Allderdice got an XL? There’s a joke.

    • Carson

      preach.

    • lloyd

      thats what im saying….XXL fails again

  • Yung

    Fiyer wow….you nailed it. What a JOKE. How does Taylor Allderdice get ranked better for lyrics? Better yet, how did Taylor Allderdice get anything higher than a M?

    Jeez. Hey guys…it’s OK to throw out a XXL one of these days. It doesn’t hurt I promise. I never supported Mac’s music…but can’t put this mixtape down. XXL hands down.

    • http://www.lqent.blogspot.com L.Q.

      For the simple fact that almost all of his features talked about nothing but BS in their verses and there were a couple weak hooks means it won’t get a XXL. If this gets a XXL then Section.80 deserves a diamond plaque. XL is very reasonable tho.

    • michael

      you have no idea how rare a XXL is. if they just throw them out then they dont mean anything.

    • The Rap Man

      Oh wow. This CANNOT be an XXL. XXL denotes a classic. This is anything but. I’ll agree that it’s better than Allderdice, but come on. This isn’t top 20 albums of all time, my friend. XL is very fair.

    • Hiphophead08

      You must not listen to hip hop if you believe these lyrics deserved a XXL… an L was very accurate

  • Mike

    I agree that the lyrics should be rated higher. This is for sure Mac’s best mixtape to date. I liked Taylor Allderdice and I’m a fan of Wiz but I enjoyed Macadelic more and thought it was more original.

  • brizzy

    Yea lyrics should be higher but taylor allderdice and macadelic are both excellent mixtapes.

  • J

    givin Mac’s lyrics an L should be outlawed. sometimes I feel like they may get ignored bcuz of his stuffy sounding voice/delivery, but L? AT LEAST XL, and if not XXL then I wanna know what it takes to get XXL for lyrics.

    • Sir Escobar

      XXL for lyrics = Lupe Fiasco-type lyricism. Lupe Fiasco has been the only rapper that i’ve seen on this sight recieve XXL for lyrics on a mixtape.

      On a side note. This really this Mac’s best tape to date and i believe the lyric rating should me an XL. The beats were dope, but i wasnt feeling it cause it felt so slow, not hyped up like his other songs. Still overall good mixtape.

      • http://www.fgikf.com gazza

        sir escobar aye your nothing but another slippery gypsy mole.

  • broski

    every time I listen to this kid I think of every single white kid with paid up parents in the suburbs who put out there whack ass cds and think if they have generic ass hard Kane beat type beat that there fire. HIP hop like this website is so dead. let me reminiscence the good old days of Xxl website where you would work all day come home jump on here ready for that fire but not anymore. THe game is fucked its so depressing man.

  • black

    Nas was 19 when he first started recording Illmatic and 21 when it was released, stop using youth as an excuse. No one over 17 should be given excuses for youth

  • @fux_wit_gizzy

    how’d I know this was gonna get an XL…

    • http://www.fgikf.com gazza

      yea dards.

  • http://www.fgikf.com gazza

    jaron knight is gay

  • http://www.fgikf.com gazza

    nah just joking cody tippers a fag luke rogers a fag harley and ryan are fucking faggs hope yous all see this enjoy reading this comment fuck 5o cent and you cunt face mother fucking cunt cunt cunt cunt cunt cunt cunt hope yous all die slow mother fuckers my 44 make sure all you kids dont grow!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ps. did i say cody takes it up the bumhole.. hahahahahahaha faggots.

  • Pacer

    Dope mixtape. Mac gave us a glimpse at a bit more diversity & for that should be commended.
    Thoguhts From A Blacony & Fight The Feeling with Kendrick are easily the standout tracks.
    I’m perosnally a lil disappointed with the Loud track.

    But an overall XL is a due rating. Piece that XL together how you want, but thats what it is.

  • DanielOrtiz

    I think the mix tape was very well done actully it was beyond that. mac had a idea in his head and morphed it into a really cool trip not a mixtape, a trip and thats what you get from macadelic the beats are dope with a very slow and lingering felling that sticks in your head after the track is over so.. xl on the beats good in my book the lyrics for the most part is what has everybody really diveded on this tape some say there his best some say they are his weakest and i think i know why. first i wana say what i think about the lyrics there okey do i think the L is rightfully placed… yes now why a L and not Xl? becuse what you guys nead to see is the lyrics arnt really that tricky or witty one can even go as far as saying they dont even really rhyme its the subject matter his fans confuse for his best lyrics if you have kid who mostly only really talks about having fun cloths and the ill skills he has and then one day just starts talking about some dark craze drug sex fueled stories its gona seem amazing cuse its something new from someone who you expect the complete oppisite of saying and granted your not gona listing to this tape all the time or hell even often cuse who really wants to listen to some really darck stuff and i feell maybe thats why alot mac miller fans dont like it becuse they ethier wont really ready for something like this or they thought they where gonna get another best day ever and maybe one day when they just wanna listen to something difrent or there just tired of all the up beat party hip pop we hear mostly today and they turn on macadelic they see for what it really is a mc who has the balls to actully say fuck it i wanna do some deep music and something difrent why ? becuse i can! some say he sold out but ask yourself this if mac made millions of his usual style of party hip hop songs then how is making something the complete oppisite and not knowing wether or not your fans will like it selling out ? with that said i think this tape needs more then just a XL for originality it needs a XXL. P.S i think the new wiz mixtape is kinda wack idk just dosent feel like him it felt like he was trying to hard to be himself if that make sense

    • zomb

      absolutely agree with your point that “wiz sounded like he was trying too hard to be him.” he’s a different guy now, and arguably a little softer because he’s with amber but he still tried to act like he was the same kush and oj dude. definitely noticed it too, he didn’t sound authentic, and I love Wiz

      • DanielOrtiz

        im glad you notice that too, the hole time i was listing to the mix tape i was like this sounds like his just trying to do kush and oj againg but faild i just think wiz maybe a little burned out he wasnt as his best i mean i dont really care who he dates but dont go do some shit like putting amber on your tape and im not saying that cuse i dont like her or something like i think she seems nice im saying this cuse i think she sucks! im sorry but if you just listin to Never been part 1 and then listing to part 2 to wich is the one that is on Allderdice your just gona say wtf is rick ross doing here cuse something about the hole tape just dosent feel like wiz it dosent even really have any soul behind it or creativaty it just seem like a wack remake. if a mc wants to change there style i.e cloths they wear people they hang out with and stuff like thats cool and okey with me but if your music isnt really changing with you then its just not gonna feel like you idk i think he just needs to go back to i.d labs lock himself in that bitch smoke a shit loed of weed and stop hanging around with juicy j so much and just wear some sweats or something cunffy and gives something new something that feels like wiz

  • Roman

    This is bullshit, not just taylor who should get smaller tho

  • MG

    Wtf? This mixtape was not better than Allderdice!! XXL got this review right. his lyrics are a L. Stop bitchin and comparing

  • B

    The people saying Macadelic is wack will be the same ones praising 50 Cent’s next album.. What a joke.

  • sandro

    this is so much better than blue slide lyrically, and he sounds more natural in this mixtape

  • Rain

    I’m never coming here again, How in the hell this get a better score than Gods father, the two should switch ratings. Gods father blows this tape out the water in ever category. XXL just hates. If you don’t believe me listen to it.

  • Big

    MAC is fuckin only 20 and the dude can spit with ANYBODY…hes dope as shit across the board. this comin from a real nigga. stop hatin this white boy doin his thing.
    peace from the 412

  • http://soundcloud.com/maestro313 Maestro

    Giving Mac’s lyrics a L is a disappointment. He really went in on this tape. I like Mac and Wiz both but Mac outdid Wiz by leaps and bounds when it comes to the lyrics between Allerdice and Macadelic. This tape deserves straight XLs across the board. The beats on this tape were exceptionally good as well, better than a lot of beats I’ve heard on commercial releases lately. That is attributed partially to the EXCELLENT mixing done by ID Labs. They do great work. So for me:

    Beats: XL
    Lyrics: XL
    Originality: XL
    Most Dopeness: XLLLLLLLLLLLLL

  • Brittany

    This mixtape is better than Mac’s album. But I’d still give it a 6.5/10

  • Sergeant D

    yo man macs lyrics in this mixtape definatly deserve atleast an XL but in reality they are XXL this dude spits fire in this mixtape! way to come back mac!!

  • http://Twitter.com Germ

    The Lyrics Deserved XXL & The Oringinality Deserved An XXL Mac is just the best rapper ever to live.. I Love Taylor Allderdice & Wiz .. But this was the best mixtape of the year ..