Thursday, December 13, 2018

Keep it Esketit, Stupid

The controversial figure Lil Pump has divided the music world into two camps. The first being, Lil Pump is very dumb and makes terrible music and the latter understanding that both those facts are true but are also aware that this is entirely the point of Lil Pump. Throughout the hip-hop criticism world, the popularity of Lil Pump has also exposed an underlying elitism which praises more "lyrical" artists while denying the beauty of other art. However, the persona of Lil Pump established by his music and his online presences create an interesting dichotomy of honesty and excess. Furthermore, Lil Pump's directness sometimes creates a more cutting and interesting message. I believe the obvious lyrical poetry of people such as Kendrick Lamar exemplified in the song untitled 05 is not any more valuable than that of Drug Addicts by Lil Pump. The intricately woven beauty of Kendrick Lamar's word at time feel less like a true experience. Because this raw trueness is the main purpose of poetry as described in  Sound and Sense: an Introduction to Poetry Pump's directness is at times more effective than Lamar's words. 

For example, untitled 05's references to drug use and include: 

                Taaka vodka on the top of my binocular I'm drunk
                How can I make them popular, pop em' when I want                
                See I'm livin' with anxiety, duckin' sobriety
                Drove alone, with a bottle of his own grippin' the handle

Throughout the song, the beautiful lyrics paint a portrait of addiction. And while these lyrics do provide a portrait of a life, I cannot say that this makes me truly feel the intimate and raw experiences that Drug Addicts does. There is always a facade of cleverness which does not discredit its poetic qualities but dilutes it. 

Lil Pump represents a poetic candor which is typically buried under layers of complex diction and techniques. He begins:

              Whole gang full of drug addicts (ooh, chyeah)
              Take a lot of shit, forgot what happened (forgot what happened)
              I ain't gon' lie, I got a habit (ooh, I got a habit)
              Swear to God, you can't be on my status (I swear to God!)
              Start the day off with a pint (yeah, brr-brr!)
              I'ma show you how to live life (yeah, ooh!)
              Take a lot of drugs, don't think twice (wow)
              I do this every day and all night (ooh, ooh!)

The first line "Whole gang full of drug addicts" brings light to communal spiral rather than the introspective nature of drug addictions. We are brought deeper into the darkness of Pump's affliction. He tells the tale of his affliction with a sense of direction and even pride which allows the listener to truly submerge themselves in the experience. His biting honesty is the closest I have felt to understanding the effects of addiction in a person's life and for that reason, it is true poetry. 


  1. You make good points I never knew that

  2. The use of large words to describe Lil Pumps artistry does not make your argument more believable or correct. It is impossible to compare two artists that are almost in completely separate genres of music. The fact that you took Lil Pump's entire chorus and only four lines from Kendrick's song is unfair and literally impossible to compare. Although I personally enjoy Lil Pump's music I can not agree that Lil Pump has any type of "poetic candor" or superiority over Kendrick Lamar. Lil Pump makes music to play at a party, while Kendrick makes music that could be played at a party, such as "M.A.A.D City" or songs to listen to and thoroughly enjoy the complete story such as, "Sing About Me, I'm Dying of Thirst." I also do not understand how you truly feel the raw experiences that Drug Addicts exhibits over "Untitled 05", when one song is about overcoming addiction and one is about embracing and bragging about addiction. If anything at all there should be an equality. The post was well worded, but I feel as if you tried to use "smart" or "big" words to make your point seem more valid. Kendrick Lamar is a wordsmith, Lil Pump a money hungry child.


    1. I completely agree. Even if you just compare Lil Pump's chorus to a point later in the 1st verse of "Untitled 05" when Kendrick says:
      "Once upon a time I used to go to church and talk to God
      Now I'm thinkin' to myself, hollow tips is all I got
      Now I'm drinkin' by myself, at the intersection, parked
      Watch you when you walk inside your house
      You threw your briefcase all on the couch
      I plan on creeping through your fuckin' door and blowin' out
      Every piece of your brain until your son jump in your arms
      Cut on the engine, then sped off in the rain, I'm gone."
      You can see that Lil Pump cannot even compare to Kendrick Lamar in terms of poetry. This is a much more intense and masterful depiction of addiction and not only its effect on the user but on the people around him.

    2. "Throughout the hip-hop criticism world, the popularity of Lil Pump has also exposed an underlying elitism which praises more "lyrical" artists while denying the beauty of other art"

  3. I like the block format for the parts of the song 👍

  4. I honestly have never really thought about the lyrics of a Lil Pump song but this was really interesting to read! Just because something isn't perfect art doesn't mean it's not valid.