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YUNGBLUD - weird!

Last week YUNGBLUD released his highly anticipated sophomore album ‘weird!’ and it’s an album that was definitely worth the wait. YUNGBLUD is an artist that has grown so much over the last year leading up to the release of this album, gaining more popularity within the industry and being unashamed about who he is. This album is a testament to that and his stories. There have been many songs released throughout the year for this album, after it got delayed a few times due to the pandemic. But having just made the end of the year, this is not the last time you will hear me talking about this album.

The album starts with ‘teresa’, we are thrown straight into the album with this song, it’s a really interesting way to start the album and not the song I expected to come first. But I love it. This song has everything, from pianos and great sounding guitars to amazing vocals and lyrics. This is a song to me that highlights how good YUNGBLUD is and what his songs are capable of being. The chorus here is explosive and anthemic and you will be sat with your mouth open at the end waiting for more.

Cotton Candy is next, a song that I wasn’t sure about at first and was probably the song I listened to the least before the album came out. However it has really grown on me and the bass line and groove throughout really takes the stage. It’s such a catchy song, and it will get stuck in your head for days. The layered vocals in the chorus add more texture to the song and it reminds me of The 1975’s earlier music within its lyrics and groove. Lyrically the song shows an aspect of my generation that we all know is there but don’t talk about without feeling ashamed. I think it’s cool that YUNGBLUD has written a song about casual sex and how that is a coping mechanism, perhaps not a good one, and a good time for a lot of young adults. It’s normalising it and getting rid of the stigma, which is something YUNGBLUD is definitely good at doing.

The third song Strawberry Lipstick is more what we’ve come to expect from YUNGBLUD, and one that I can imagine will be great live with its punk leaning tendencies. It’s another really catchy song with some great shouted vocals at the end that will help you get through the next lockdown as you scream them out of your window.

'mars' has to be one of my favourite songs on this album. I love this song so much, it’s so powerful, lyrically and musically. The build up in the song to its explosive end is euphoric and captivating. The story behind the song and the fan that it’s written about really shows how much YUNGBLUD cares and wants his shows and music to be a safe space for everyone, as music should be in 2020. The vocals in the pre chorus are breathtaking and that part has to be one of my favourite parts of the song, that and the explosive ending. The desperation of it is heart-wrenching. It’s a song that definitely calls out to his fanbase, and they have responded wildly.

superdeadfriends was a song that took me a while to warm up to. I instantly liked the punk influences of it but wasn’t sure if it was more of a filler track. I think this song would be fun live, and would really get the crowd going. I also really like the layers in the chorus and the different parts that are happening. That pulls it together for me. The next song, love song, is another heart-wrencher lyrically and that accompanied by the layered acoustic guitars make it a likeable ballad that you will end up crying to at 2am in the future. The end of it reminds me of the end of a ballad from the 2000’s, it’s a nostalgic feeling for all of us and you can start to see the influences from that decade shine through. Something that makes sense given YUNGBLUD’s age, and it’s nostalgic for listeners as that decade was our childhood/teenage-hood.

‘god save me, but don’t drown me out’ is my favourite song on this album. I love everything about it from the lyrics and the vocals, the desperation we hear in them to the guitars that soundtrack it. It’s a song that’s calling out in a freeing and euphoric way and unashamed about who it is. It’s something that so many of us feel and needed to hear. I have to tip my hat to Zakk Cervini who produced this album, it sounds great, modern but nostalgic and blending everything together so well. Cervini has produced some of my favourite sounding albums of recent times and here he has done it again. Everyone needs to listen to this song at 2am to fully get that euphoric feeling that I had while listening.

Ice Cream Man has to be the most anticipated song of this album. After being played a few times live it became a fan favourite and listening to the song on the album, I can see why. It reeks of classic YUNGBLUD and gig vibes (we all just want them back) and that’s a good thing. It’s also another song that will get stuck in your head for a while, with it’s catchy hooks and guitars. All the instruments work together so well here and it’s a great listen. Weird! Was the first song we heard from this album, it soundtracked our lockdowns and it gave us a bit hope amongst everything. It’s a song that speaks about these times and to so many people as well. The chorus is fun and energetic, it’s a mood uplifter.

Charity is another song where we see those 2000’s influences shine through, mainly through the lens of britpop music. It’s such a fun song, another one that will be great live. The chorus is explosive and I love it, make sure your neighbours hear you jumping around to this one. Parts of the song kind of reminded me of early twenty one pilots if they had been British, mainly on the rhythmic side there, underneath the shiny britpop layer that catches our ears. It sounds like something you’ve heard before.

Acting Like That with Machine Gun Kelly is probably my least favourite song on this album. Some people won’t like me for saying that but hear me out. This song could’ve been so much more lyrically, it felt like it was going somewhere and then the chorus kicks in and it feels like a generic MGK song. To me, this doesn’t feel like a YUNGBLUD song, though it is kind of catchy, I just feel like they could have done so much better here. I think we were all hoping for something similar to I Think I’m Okay, but we got this instead and I don’t think it’s a song I will be coming back to very often.

The album ends with the songs ‘it’s quiet in beverly hills’ and ‘the freak show’, the first of which is an acoustic ballad about the reality of the American Dream from a very British perspective, it feels bittersweet about glorifying LA and being a successful musician there, it’s all out in the open and about how lonely it can be. The latter of the two, ‘the freak show’ is the epic ending we knew was coming. It’s a crazy song with multiple parts but YUNGBLUD manages to pull it off flawlessly. The chorus is very filmic and probably my favourite part, it has hints of ‘The End’ by My Chemical Romance and other parts and dramatics of The Black Parade mixed with Queen and Bowie, but is still unapologetically a YUNGBLUD song. It’s so good, and a testament of what YUNGBLUD is capable of. It’s empowering and it feels like it belongs to our generation.

So there you have my thoughts on ‘weird!’ By YUNGBLUD, probably one of the most anticipated albums this year. There really is something there for everyone so I would recommend giving it a listen even if you have been unsure about YUNGBLUD before. If you want to read about what happened on his virtual tour then I have written a post about that which I will link at the end with everything else. As always, thanks for reading and until next time…

Listen to weird! here.

Buy weird! here.

Follow YUNGBLUD on Spotify here.

Follow YUNGBLUD on Instagram here.

Read my thoughts on the ‘Weird Time Of Life’ virtual tour here.

Follow After Midnight on Instagram here.

Follow After Midnight on Facebook here.

Follow me on Spotify here.

Follow me on Instagram here.

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