Lil Peep’s new album is raw, real and vulnerable – as he always was.
The first half of the opening track “Broken Smile (My All)” introduces the album in a beautifully haunting tone. Over a broken piano and a ticking clock that broods onward, Peep gently mumbles the first lyrics of the album: “I gotta go right now, that’s all.” Given Peep’s passing almost one year ago, the first two minutes of the album are chilling, to say the least.
The 13-track album includes previously released singles “Runaway,” “Cry Alone,” “Life is Beautiful” and “Falling Down.”
One of my favorite tracks thus far, after several play-throughs, is “16 Lines.” Peep explicitly provides an outline of sorts of his discography and, more broadly, his aesthetic.
16 lines of blow and I’m fine / Break my bones, but act as my spine / I wonder who you’ll fuck when I die / And if I tried to call, would you cry? / Please don’t cry, you’re wastin’ your time.
Drugs, sex, co-dependency, doubt, depression – the main ingredients.
Immediately following “16 Lines,” Peep completes his aesthetic recipe with “Life is Beautiful.” Producers Smokeasac and IVII remastered and remixed an older track originally titled “Life.” Peep ironically fuses the darkness with hope. It’s a reminder that life, despite how bleak things might get, is still beautiful. It’s a celebration of pain, a quality that Peep embodied in his music.
Emotionally, it’s a difficult song to listen to. I can’t help but tear up as Peep sings, “I think I’ma die alone inside my room,” because that’s exactly how the young star left his bright life. The outro lyrics paradoxically compliment the darkness, reminding us that life is still beautiful: “Isn’t life beautiful? I think that life is beautiful.”
The last track I want to mention is “Fingers,” due to the in-your-face, obviousness of Peep’s pop-punk/rock influences. It’s remarkably reminiscent of a Blink-182 song. Peep sampled some of their music in his older work.
I’ll be listening to this album on repeat for the next few days. There’s a lot to digest and I’ve only just scratched the surface. It presents a defined sonic aesthetic of Lil Peep, but one that stays true to his dark, raw lyrical content.
For more on Lil Peep, I urge you to read this article by John Jeremiah Sullivan. It’s by far the best writing I’ve come across regarding the young artist “who always said he would die young.”
Featured image captured from MONTREALITY interview.