A shift, noticeable both in and outside of hip hop, is moving our society from a culture that loves stagnancy to a one that values progression. The overconfidence in our relative greatness left Americans, and by default most of the world, living a life of never ending circles. Buying from the same car companies, eating the same processed foods and using the same dying forms of entertainment, makes Americans, or the infamous “gringos”, seem pretty fuckin’ disillusioned and disheartening.
Enter Delusional Thomas, aka Mac Miller on more drugs than usual. Mac being a master of mood-setting, you can see and hear the stench of our rotting existence breathe through the musical sounds of Delusional Thomas. Automated vocals and live instrumentation-influenced production, lay the foundation to tell the story of a dazed & confused individual who can’t seem to find any of the fucks he was born with.
The glory within this project, as well as most of Mac’s other music, is that Young Miller is a “creative genius”, as Kanye would put it. The layers of creative execution behind the name Delusional Thomas, is easy to see since it runs deep and hits with precision impact. The simple decision to mesh live instruments with an automated voice is one of many that paints the picture for Delusional Thomas’ emotionally unstable but intelligent as fuck aesthetic.
Delusional Thomas begins with the sounds of gunshots and children’s laughter, and ends with the definitive and depressed production winding down as the end of a film reel would. If DT represents the state of man raised in a society of repetitive bullshitting, then this little creative input sets the stage like hell. The emphasis on duality that exists in our society is demonstrated by the obvious contrast between killing machines and lovable youths. If I wanted to take it a tad further, I could say the clashing sounds relate to the negative weight of our actions and the distractions we hold on to as painkillers.
But who should give a fuck about that? It’s much easier to just listen to the enveloping clash-N-bang production, and absorb Mac Miller’s ‘I’m a depressed helium addict’ raps instead of think about his conceptual direction. But wait! Using whatever weird effect lay on his vocal patterns, actually turned away most of the fans who only listen to Mac because everybody thinks he’s a cool guy. Sounding like a different individual allows Mac to grab the attention of those who like listening to something different and share a stream of consciousness that is separate from himself. Basically this shit runs deep, and is a great example of what is becoming much more largely accepted in the desolate society DT drowns in.
We should all be thankful to hip hop for allowing creative individuals to so powerfully show the importance of doing something different. Mac Miller wouldn’t be making such weird shit if the world was less covered in weird shit, but it fits. So enjoyable it is.