Mac Miller’s sophomore album, Watching Movies With The Sound Off, will be released next week on the same day Kanye West and J. Cole will be releasing their respective albums. It is no secret that Mac is going to be the underdog come next Tuesday (June 18th), but to be mentioned in the same breadth as both Yeezy and Cole is an accomplishment in itself. Keep in mind that Mac Miller is still independent and will more than likely outsell his debut album which came in at number one after its first week out. The major difference between Blue Slide Park and Watching Movies is that with this new album Mac has taken up some production duties and is also the executive producer for it. He has been producing for other artists these past few months and his work has been pretty impressive so far.
The opening track on the album, “The Star Room,” really sets the tone for the entire album. The track is a bit on the darker side with Mac rapping about feeling blackballed by the industry and not trying to find a deal with a major label. The track with Earl Sweatshirt, on which he really sounds sounds like Tyler, The Creator, is the first feature on the album. Earl keeps it simple on the hook with Mac Miller doing some singing in the background. That really made the hook a lot doper. One of my favorite tracks on the album, “Objects In The Mirror,” was released prior to the album leak by way of Mac’s The Space Migration Sessions. It is one of the many mellow tracks on this new album, a sound that Mac fans should be accustomed to thanks to tracks on previous projects. Other notable tracks are “Someone Like You” and “Aquarium.”
There are many features on ‘Watching Movies…,‘ a complete change from his first album which included no features. This shouldn’t come as much of a surprise since his most recent mixtape, Macadellic, had features from Juicy J, Kendrick Lamar, and Lil Wayne among many others. However, none of the features on Blue Slide Park made it onto the album. My favorite features on the album come from Ab Soul, Schoolboy Q, Action Bronson and probably the most surprising of all, Jay Electronica. The definite standout of all features on this album has to be “Gees,” with Schoolboy Q. Chuck Inglish provides a crazy instrumental and both Mac and Schoolboy deliver some pretty dope verses as well. Ab Soul’s feature is also good and makes up for the pretty weak feature on Chance’s Acid Rap project; I was really hoping he would give Chance a better verse.
The Pharrell-produced “Objects In The Mirror” wasn’t the only track that was released prior to the album’s release. His track, “S.D.S.,”was the first release off of the album. The Flying Lotus-produced track is strong but I still don’t feel it should have been the lead track. The second release and title track, “Watching Movies,” would have been a better lead single in my opinion. The track showcases Mac’s production skills and is overall a better song than “S.D.S.” If you pick up a deluxe version of the album, you will get Mac’s tracks with Diplo and Tyler, The Creator. That something you should definitely look into if you are already planning on purchasing the album.
We know it will be tough to pick up albums by Mac, Yeezy and Cole next Tuesday. If you plan on purchasing Mac’s sophomore album, you can pre-order the album on iTunes here.
Key Tracks: Watching Movies, Gees, Objects In The Mirror, Matches, Someone Like You, Bird Call (There’s a Frank Thomas reference on this track!)