Review Summary: True Genius behind Dumbass branding
Based on the name, I thought Yung Skrrt would be more of a parody than a legitimate project. Out of all the possible combinations for a typical hip-hop alias, choosing the overused ad-lib as a project name seemed to be a recipe for flavorless bits — that is until I listened to the album and my perspective immediately swung 180 degrees. Indeed, the record is still archetypical of Soundcloud rap, although the tropes of the niche tendencies are elevated to the maximum level with a cutthroat musical production. Dumbass Genius
is eclectic in its approach and cohesive in its execution, a new realm from its genre to unravel.
...goes Yung Skrrt. That ad-lib, the frequent opener to his songs, is a warcry to his verses. While Yung Skrrt’s production seems to do most of the heavy lifting, it’s not as if his vocals fall short or end up as mumble-jumble. In fact, he channels a variety of moods over his maximalist beats. The lyrical content is also surprisingly introspective and moody at times. Not so often do you find Soundcloud rappers so pragmatic in their quests for fame and glory. A high level of self-awareness is apparent, radiating throughout Dumbass Genius
. Yung Skrt doesn’t try too hard to be insightful in any particular way, yet he also doesn’t wallow so much in incoherence as to become meaningless. This makes the record ambitious, and colorful to behold. As can already be summarized, the main focus of Dumbass Genius
can be split into 3 categories: introspective, melancholic, and pure banger. For a 15-track album (including 4 fillers) condensed into 35 minutes runtime, it strikes a well-balanced approach without overpowering or overstaying its welcome.
All I want is to find my calling
After all, Yung Skrrt understands how far his endeavor can take him. The revelation of his self-oriented motives in “Calling” also teases his mastery of autotune applications. Autotune serves as a pair of wings that allow him to acrobatically glide through ranges of emotions. For the melancholic side of the album, it’s a vocal range extender, a sad boi vibes amplifier. For other tracks, it’s a flavor enhancer for the hooks and verses. In “Fault on Me”, as an instance, every time the rhyme hits and sparks an overdub, causing a melody that sticks to your ear like a flex tape. The catchiness also extends to all choruses within this album. Although, “Chia Sceptre” takes the cake for the most infectious track, bordering on the psychedelic with its barrage of rhyming sections, a flood of ad-libs, and explosive percussion.
Just drowning underwater, drowning underwater, yeah
The feeling of knowing somebody far above your league results in critical damage to Skrrt’s self-esteem, leading to his attempt to suppress his feelings in “Joan of Arc”. And yet, the repeating line of “What I'd be right now/ What I'd be without you girl” in “Beright” negates it completely. The paradox becomes even more complicated once “Till Midnight”, a perfect breakup song is taken into consideration. Well, regardless of their overarching theme, this trio of moody pop-rap exemplifies Yung Skrrt’s ability to flesh out melancholic vibes, once again assisted through his use of autotune.
When will it turn to what I'm tryna be?
It’s too easy to get distracted sometimes, especially when things are progressing slowly. The fear of uncertainty could strike at any time, and so Yung Skrrt asked himself, “F*ck what it be?”. “Codematch” is his narration of the path he is taking. The chorus splits into 2 parts: a lamentation of his struggle, followed by a projection of his successful future that casts a self-encouraging bluff. The verse in this song is the extension of the former expression. The weariness in his delivery thickens as his voice turns more robotic as it flows, painting progress or lack thereof within Yung Skrrt’s career. And with every thump of the trap snare, his insecurity grows, but the show has to keep going, in the pursuit of decoding the code
, to find the match
within the success that he envisioned.
I'm gonna take my time/ To make sure I’m honest/ To make sure I’m on it, yeah
There is no chorus in the closing track “Finally in Love”; instead, a synthpop-flavored electronic passage fills in. As though words are not needed to describe the euphoria of finally reaching the point that Yung Skrrt has yearned for all along. It’s his self-realization; for every hardship, moments of ease will follow and “Finally in Love” is the sound of celebration. Maybe the success that Yung Skrrt envisioned isn’t the fulfillment of his quest, but rather his musical progress that he made along the way.
is indeed a dumbass record if mistaken for something other than a simplistic moody indulgence of trap music. The way Yung Skrrt capitalizes on its simplicity is genius, turning the album into an art piece that resonates easily with those prepared to embrace it. Or maybe it’s simply genius music for dumbasses like me.