Yelawolf is a 42 year old rapper, singer, songwriter, fashion designer & entrepreneur from Gadsden, Alabama who came up as a contestant on The Road to Stardom in 2005. His debut album Creekwater that same year, but didn’t catch the mainstream’s attention until New Year’s Day 2010 off the strength of his 4th mixtape Trunk Muzik. This caught the attention of Detroit icon Eminem, who signed Catfish Billy to his Interscope Records imprint Shady Records the following year. Yelawolf went on to release 4 albums under his contract with Slim, leaving in Spring 2019 to focus on continuing to build his own label Slumerican Records. He’s gone rogue since dropping a different project every week throughout last April, but is re-emerging with his 8th full-length album produced entirely by Shooter Jennings.
The title track is a hard rock flavored opener talking about being battle ready whereas “Hole in My Head” goes into more acoustic territory touching down on alcoholism. “Rock & Roll Baby” has a bit of a [Lynyrd Skynyrd] influence to it telling the story of a woman who’ll be heart broke by the sunlight, but then “Make Me a Believer” pulls from [Ric Ocasek] talking about self worth. Meanwhile on “Shoestring”, we have Yelawolf returning into acoustic turf detailing the tale of him barely missing bus call just before “Radio” talks about how pretty this chick used to be before she did coke & the riff has this rebellious feeling to it.
“Jump Out the Window” goes into a more cheerful direction encouraging the listener that everything’s possible, but then the song “Catch You on the Other Side” reveals itself to be a piano ballad pondering where he went wrong. The penultimate track “Fucked Up Day” has crescendoing instrumental talking about a shitty day in the neighborhood & “Moonshiner’s Run” ends the album with an ass-kicking dedication to all the moonshine makers out there.
A lot of genre-crossovers can fall flat on their faces like Rebirth & Supermarket, but I’m actually surprised at how much I liked a good portion of Sometimes Y. I really admire how Yelawolf managed to stick to a southern rock style without trying too hard to appeal to a radio market that doesn’t exist & there really couldn’t have been a better producer choice than Shooter Jennings because he really homes in on that sound pretty well.