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'Mud Mouth' Yelawolf Album Review

Yelawolf closes his April Onslaught album run with his new, LSD trip inspired, studio album 'Mud Mouth'



My relationship with Yelawolf has always been strong. Since discovering him in 2015 after he signed with Shady Records I hadn't found myself disappointed by a single project, until this April Onslaught run. In March Yelawolf announced his April Onslaught, a run of 4 projects, one released every Friday through April 2021. The first of those 4 releases was his collaboration with RiFF RaFF, 'Turquoise Tornado'. Sadly, 'Turquoise Tornado' was the first Yelawolf project I found myself disappointed by. I found it musically horrendous and I couldn't even tell you about that project lyrically because I didn't finish one track.

After the RiFF RaFF collaboration I became terrified about the April Onslaught, becoming truly concerned that we'd see 4 full projects I couldn't stand, which would be crushing considering my years of Yelawolf overconsumption. Fortunately, my concerns were crushed the week after, when Yelawolf dropped 'Slumafia' with DJ Paul and followed it with 'Mile Zero', by himself and DJ Muggs. I have released very positive reviews for both these albums already, and I'd recommend listening to both these albums before you go into 'Mudmouth'. The reason for this being how each album has represented a different aspect of Yelawolf's musical repertoire. While 'Slumafia' presents strong connections to Yelawolf's southern roots, 'Mile Zero' sees Yelawolf take it back to his Hip-Hop beginnings, covering DJ Muggs' lo-fi beats with non-stop wordplay.

This leads me to Yelawolf's seventh studio album, 'Mud Mouth', produced entirely by Jim Jonsin. An album that once again demonstrates Yelawolf's proficiency on the mic as he transitions from rapping to singing seamlessly across multiple songs. He has a mixture of tracks on the album, showing a wide range of skill. Let's take a look at the songs as there's a lot to talk about here!


Light As A Feather

The album opens with the sound of crickets in a field, immediately transporting the listener into Yelawolf's country world. A distorted voice then opens the song, before Yelawolf takes over the mic. The beat slows down to make space for the hook, which is a lovely, slow, sung hook.

Light as a feather, stiff as a board I'm feelin' better, better than before I'm layin' level, I'm layin' level, ten feet off the floor When I'm light as a feather, stiff as a board

Oh No

On first listening to 'Oh No', the intro into the song got me nervous. Over time I have got used to it however and have grown to like the intro.

As soon as the first verse starts and the beat drops this song quickly becomes irresistible to me. The beat Jim Jonson offers up is insane, it's quirky and different, sounding just like music from a circus, but built into a Hip-Hop beat. The verse to hook transition is incredibly smooth, despite being totally different musically. Heavy guitars come out of nowhere to usher in the hook where Yelawolf lays a simple but effective hook, this could be a hint at what to expect from the rappers pending rock album. Finally, during the third verse Jim Jonsin adds some horns to the beat, making the song feel like it gets more grand as the track progresses.


Bounce

Once again, this track features a great beat that Yelawolf seems to be able to rap for days over. His verses are very strong throughout the song, and he offers up a simple hook at which point heavy bass thuds burst into the instrumental. The song has a lot of energy, and cries to be played at full volume.


Conoco

'Conoco' sees Yelawolf continue to rap well over a new Jim Jonsin beat. The hook I enjoy, but feel is one of the weakest hooks on the project, and can see why others would find it tedious.


Dope

Yelawolf becomes more melodic at this point in the album. The instrumental for this song features some fast drum taps with piano keys laced in the background.

Used to be a bad mouth, runnin' 'round the house Sayin' words that I shouldn't and I got it from my folks If I got caught, I would end up in my room Sat down 30 minutes with a mouth full of soap Put it all on paper, go to sleep and then wake up with the same bad mouth I was sent to bed fo' Now I make a livin' sellin' all the bad words to the kids like me who will grow to be dope


Rocks At Your Window

This track is a lot slower than the others on the album, featuring some country-style guitar plucking, and some lovely strings build up with Yelawolf's singing. Yelawolf offers a pretty hook, and his 'ooh's throughout the song lift the track, giving it an almost-ethereal feel.

Ooh, ooh I'm throwin' rocks at your window Know you're up there in a big house lookin' down Ooh, ooh I'm throwin' rocks at your window Know you're up there in a big house lookin' down

Yelawolf then, out-of-nowhere, raps the third verse, offering some strong lyrics, flowing brilliantly over the beat as usual.


Hillbilly Einstein

Comfortably my favourite song on the album. The melody of the hook is irresistible to me, the message of the song is strong and I'm sure sentimental to many.

If I had one dream, that I could dream at all I'd pass out drunk on the floor with the lights on Go to sleep on the single white carpet and take off Put my gold plaque up on every hater's wall 'Cause I was raised in a place where People don't believe that anything is possible But you can have it all You can have it all

The beat suits the narrative of track perfectly, with some guitar strings being plucked throughout.


Money

'Money' brings the album away from the melodic tracks it had moved into. The song sees Yelawolf, Jelly Roll and Struggle Jennings exchange verses all based around their financials. I particularly enjoyed how Jelly Roll built the title of the following track, 'Losers Win Again' into his verse, and that Struggle Jennings helped define what 'Mud Mouth' means:

If you're worth more, gotta work more Still gonna run my mud mouth if I'm dirt poor

Losers Win Again

This track is an introduction to the song following it. Most of the song is a skit, but it moves into a short, smooth verse. Yelawolf's voice has a small echo on it giving the same ethereal feel to the song as previously in the album.


Dog House

'Dog House' is Yelawolf's every man song, writing about a situation that all men have experienced at same point... running their mouth and finding themselves in the 'Dog House'. The song features a country-style instrumental with it's guitar strings and tapping drums to back it. Yelawolf once again offers a smooth, melodic hook that sounds gorgeous:

And now I'm in the dog house And I'll be out 'til the mornin' sippin' whiskey 'til I can't walk straight For runnin' my big mouth Out with the boys 'til the early mornin', partyin' the problem away

Homeward Bound

On this interlude-like track Yelawolf sings a short, melodic song, with some stunning strings. The song acts as a short bridge into the next song.


Aquanet

'Aquanet' serves as 'Mud Mouth's track for the ladies. While I don't like the content of the hook, in that it is about some hairspray, I do think the song is great. The instrumental continues the strong southern influence that is so important to Yelawolf's music, but also has some heavy bass thuds and trap drums tapping across the track. Yelawolf raps really well across the whole song, and offers a highly enjoyable, melodic hook, even if it is about hairspray.


Hot

This song opens with a short intro before the beat comes in out of nowhere and Yelawolf's verse bursts onto the mic. Yelawolf's rapping is very strong over this beat, leaving me feeling that he could continue rapping over it for a long time. I do feel the hook on the song is a bit of a low-point in the album. Jim Jonsin adds some heavy-guitar into the instrumental over the hook which does make the hook sonically interesting to hear.


Mud Mouth

The album closes with the title track, which ushers in a highly country-inspired instrumental, which contains some plucking strings again, whistling, bass strings during the bridge and what sounds like a harmonica. Yelawolf doesn't let us down with his rapping as he sounds great over this instrumental. The track serves as a mid-pace, country-style closer for the album.


'Mud Mouth' offers a wide range of tracks, giving us some beautiful, melodic tracks as well as songs filled with solid bars, and big beats. For me, Yelawolf has been improving with almost every studio album. He offered us 'Radioactive', his first studio that provided some strong highlights, mixed in with some radio hits. Since then he's dropped 'Love Story', 'Trial By Fire', 'Trunk Muzik III' and 'Ghetto Cowboy'. 'Love Story' was my introduction into Yelawolf, and became my soundtrack to 2015. 'Trial By Fire' saw Yelawolf allow his country roots to creep even deeper into his musical style, while 'Trunk Muzik III' gave Yelawolf the space to prove his bars are more than solid as he allowed the country-style to be less of a factor in that project. After 'Trunk Muzik III' he swiftly dropped 'Ghetto Cowboy' which returned to his country-style, melodic music and proved his penmanship had only gotten stronger over time. He has now returned with a run of albums closing with 'Mud Mouth', an inspiring project that allows both Yelawolf's melodic talent and rapping skills to shine.


'Mud Mouth' offers the listener a taste of everything Yelawolf does well, moving from bar-heavy tracks to melodic songs with ease, all while opening the door to his upcoming rock album as the project is laced with rock inspired instrumentals. I understand Yelawolf is an acquired taste, but couldn't recommend this album highly enough. Even if he isn't usually to your taste, give the album a listen. At the end of the day, if 'Mud Mouth' resonates with you as much as it has with me, you're in for a treat!

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