Lil Yachty – “Let’s Start Here.” review

This is the 3rd full-length album from Mableton, Georgia rapper, singer/songwriter, producer & actor Lil Yachty. Skyrocketing to fame in 2016 by bringing a unique sound & personality to the trap subgenre on his debut mixtape Lil Boat, his subsequent material since then has ranged from being mid at best like Summer Songs 2 or even his previous mixtape Michigan Boy Boat to absolute trash like Teenage Emotions & Nuthin’ 2 Prove. But when I heard that Let’s Start Herewas gonna be a complete stylistic departure for Yachty in contrast to one of my favorite singles of last year “Poland”, I was sold in checking it out.

“the BLACK seminole.” pretty much sets the tone for what’s to come as Yachty sings about his inner self & compares himself to the titular Native American-Africans part of the Seminole people over a Jimi Hendrix/Pink Floyd inspired psychedelic rock instrumental whereas “the ride-“ with Teezo Touchdown takes a more neo-soul route with the 2 singing about needing the special women in their lives by their sides. “running out of time” has a more summery twang to it addressing a relationship that pretty much ran it’s course at this point prior to Foushée tagging along for the atmospheric “pRETTy” singing about dying the pussy.

After the “:(failure(:” interlude, “THE zone~” to go into space rock territory admitting that Yachty feel at home up until he’s by his lonely with Justine Syke counter-parting him telling him she never meant to make him feel alone & asking if he’d put anyone else above her leading into “WE SAW THE SUN!” having a bit of a Tame Impala influence sonically singing about how shit don’t get better & to take picture for proof. The “drive ME crazy!” duet with Diane Gordon has a more synthpop flare to it as they profess their love for one another with Yachty dropping a cool reference to Kanye’s “Jesus Lord” during the 2nd verse, but then “IVE OFFICIALLY LOST ViSiON!!!!” is an otherworldly experience detailing a bad drug trip over an EPIC guitar riff.

“sAy sOMETHINg” brings back a more mellow vibe instrumentally living the dream & feeling like a teenager again while “paint THE sky” gives me a bit of an art pop feel to it singing about stalling for & overdosing on one’s love. The song “sHouLd i B?” treads the psychedelic pop waters admitting that he needs to do right by his lover & that he ain’t mad at what she did even though he’s unsure if he should be while the penultimate track “The Alchemist.” sings about living a good life over some warm rock production. “REACH THE SUNSHINE.” featuring Daniel Caesar is a 6 minute neo-psychedelic grand finale with them talking about filling a void.

If you told me 7 years ago that the same guy who made “1Night” & “Never Switch Up” would go on to drop a full-blown psychedelic rock album & actually manage to pull it off, I would’ve laughed at you. And if anyone can’t appreciate the artistic growth that Yachty shows throughout Let’s Start Here., then that’s your funeral because the most consistent body of work that I’ve heard from him in a grip. All the artists that he draws inspiration from mentioned throughout the review (i.e. Hendrix, Pink Floyd) have literally made some of my favorite music EVER & the fact that we got a body of work from him in those specific styles of music into his own after being called a “mumble rapper” early on in his career proves ANYTHING’s possible.

Score: 4.5/5

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