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Experience the Beautiful and Scary Psychedelic Rock Trip that is LIL YACHTY ‘Let’s Start Here.’

Before this release, I think my favorite thing about Lil Yachty’s music was that it facilitated his breathtaking sneaker collection. It’s not that I didn’t like him as an artist, it’s just that I didn’t find his music to be remarkable in the trap arena. He seemed to me like another artist creating palatable music that could be quickly and easily sold to fans of the mainstream rap industry.

That’s why when Sean was like, you need to come here and listen to this Lil Yachty record with me, I was like, huh, okay. Nothing could have prepared me for “the BLACK seminole.” and I stand behind that as someone who’s now writing a review of this record. I’m not trying to prepare you for anything within, I’m not trying to explain his influences, or compare it to his earlier works. I just want you to listen to it, because I think this is one of those records that every listener can have a personal experience with. That’s the hallmark of brilliant music for me.

lil yachty rock

Let’s Start Here. also deviates from mainstream records in the sense that it’s a full-album listen instead of a collection of soundbites. It’s the kind of record that when the vinyl arrives, we’re going to eat some shrooms and lie on our couch and listen to it from beginning to end. It’s a free jazz psych record, with a hip-hop vocal cadence over live instrumentation, and it takes me on a journey through soul, funk, and indie experimental rock. I feel immersed in this album, the way I’ve felt listening to Pink Floyd, The Flaming Lips, Radiohead, Parliament-Funkadelic, Hawkwind — like I’m on some journey into another dimension that’s beautiful and scary all at once. There are drums that come in heavy with an almost John Bonham on Xanax vibe. The vocals from Diana Gordon throughout the album are divine, especially on “the BLACK seminole.” where she sings the 2023 version of Clare Torry on “The Great Gig in the Sky.” Let’s Start Here. comes with the standard “Parental Advisory Explicit Content” sticker that I’ve gravitated to since I was 13. As a parent, I’ve been listening to this record with my kids every day.

I respect the artistry behind this record. To me, it doesn’t feel like so much of a non-rap record as it does a celebration of all of the music Lil Yachty loves, listens to, and has been influenced by. This is a record made by an artist who’s thriving in his art. I’m excited to see where he takes it next, but for now, I’m going to happily marinate in Let’s Start Here..

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lil yachty rock
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Written By

Meghan MacRae grew up in Vancouver, Canada, but spent many years living in the remote woods. Living in the shadow of grizzly bears, cougars and the other predators of the wilderness taught her about the dark side of nature, and taught her to accept her place in nature's order as their prey. She is co-founder of CVLT Nation.

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