The year is 2015. We can live-broadcast things from our phone to people across the world. We have computers in our watches. We have cars that can brake and change lanes for you. But the most awe-inspiring fact is that we have new music from Flo Rida. In the year 2015 AD. I’ll give you a minute to pick your jaw up off the ground.
In case you’ve been living under a rock (or just leading a normal life. I’d bet that you would know the same amount about Flo Rida’s career either way), this is the rapper’s first new music since 2012’s Wild Ones. If you were one of the three people on earth who were thinking to themselves “you know what, my life has been lacking some new Flo Rida,” then congrats, it’s here. If you were one of the other seven billion normal people on earth, never fear, I’m here. I’m putting on my cape and listening to the new Flo Rida record so you don’t have to. Some of you may call me a hero. You wouldn’t be wrong. Here we go.
For this piece, I’m going to use the same track-by-track notes style that I did for my critically acclaimed* Ariana Grande review. It probably won’t live up to the hype. The sequels never do.
*My mom said it was cool.
Once In A Lifetime
-This piece almost got derailed before it even started. Three seconds into this song and I contemplated whether this was even worth it. Life, I mean.
-It started fine enough, with the wonderful sound of vinyl record pops similar to the start of The ’59 Sound. That was the first and last time I will ever mention The Gaslight Anthem and Flo Rida in the same thought.
-Three seconds in, the vocal sample appears. It is clearly an attempt at that sped-up style where the vocals sound like they’re being sung by a chipmunk, which is fine. I have no problem with that. But this particular sample sounds like the chipmunk inhaled a bunch of helium first and also was kind of tone deaf. It’s not pleasant.
-For some reason, when Flo Rida’s vocals show up, I’m immediately reminded of Nelly. Maybe it’s because I just really wish I was listening to Nelly instead.
-After a 30-minute delay, caused by me going and listening to a bunch of Nelly songs, I came back to this track and finished it. It was still boring and that sample was still insufferable. We’re not of to a good start.
-The beat on the opener was dull and forgetful, so I was pleasantly surprised by the first few seconds of the title track. The beat features a cool piano lick and some sparse snaps. I’m intrigued.
-Flo Rida appears with “Open up the champagne, pow/It’s my house/My house” in his very best 2 Chainz voice and I’m fully onboard. This song might actually be good.
-Well, that optimism was short-lived. Flo Rida’s real vocals come in (along with an excellent drum beat) and once again immediately remind me of another singer. It takes me a few seconds to pinpoint it, but I finally come to the realization that Flo Rida achingly similar to Shaggy, but with less of an accent.
-Is his strategy to do a bad impression of a different 90’s hip-hop artist on each track? Because we are currently two-for-two. At this point I go take another 30-minute break to listen to “It Wasn’t Me” 100 times.
-And we’re back. My main takeaways from this track are that the beat is very well done, especially compared to the song before it, but the rest of the song is a mess. This also marks the second straight song in which Flo Rida is singing the hook. Now, I may not have a lot of knowledge in the area of Flo Rida, but I believed that most of his biggest hits featured big names singing the choruses, which makes this a strange choice to me. I could be completely wrong on that statement, but I already wrote it and fact checking is for chumps.
I Don’t Like It, I Love It (feat. Robin Thicke & Verdine White)
-“You know that thing where you show somebody something and they say ‘I don’t like it’ and there’s a pause where you’re sad because they don’t like it but then they say ‘I love it’ and everyone laughs because it’s a hilarious and original joke? What if we made that the basis for the hook of a song?” – somebody at Atlantic pitching the idea for this song, probably.
-Here we have another interesting beat squandered. Funky guitars, snaps, a bouncing snare; this could have been a solid track. But then everything else happened.
-Just seeing Robin Thicke’s name makes me uncomfortable and kind of gross, so this song was already not looking great in my book before it even began, but boy did he mail in his performance. After listening to it, I would be willing to bet a large sum of money that he recorded his lazy, unenthused hook laying on his couch while eating Cheetos and watching Bob’s Burgers. But I can’t judge because that’s exactly how I’m currently writing this piece.
-I was wondering how long it would take before we were given an EDM-style beat. This being a radio-aimed record, it couldn’t legally come any later in the record.
-The thing with this song, however, is that it can’t decide whether it wants to go all out on the EDM side or stick with safer pop side. So it does both. And while going in either direction probably wouldn’t have been good, a bland blend of both is somehow worse. This song is like someone going to an EDM festival sober and wearing a suit. All the elements are around it, but it seems uncomfortable.
-Those are the most consecutive words I’ve ever written about EDM and honestly I feel sick. Let’s move on.
Here It Is (feat. Chris Brown)
-First things first, Chris Brown is a garbage human being. That disclaimer should play in your head every time I mention his name in this section. Thank you.
-That being said, Chris Brown (see above disclaimer) has a great voice. So why the need to auto-tune it? It’s not even in an interesting Young Thug way. It’s just enough to be noticeable, making it a truly confounding choice. It’s like inviting LeBron to play pickup, but instead of letting him play you make him sit on the sideline and watch your phones. You know, if LeBron was a garbage human being.
-I have to give Flo Rida credit where credit is due: up to this point, he has not busted out his trademark flow. You know, that identical cadence in every big hit he has. Not this time though, as he went four tracks with decently diverse deliveries. But Flo Rida fell off the wagon on this track. He fell off hard. It’s not pretty. Multiple injuries were reported. It’s an ugly scene. Back to you, Tom.
GDFR (feat. Sage The Gemini & Lookas)
-Wait, I’ve heard this song before. I had no idea this was Flo Rida. This is truly a revelation.
-Upon further research (going to his Wikipedia page), this was released in October 2014. It is now April 2015. That’s a bold move, Flo Rida. Let’s see if it pays off.
-It’s hard for me to go through a piece of music and not be able to take away something positive out of it. The hook on this song is that thing. It’s incredibly catchy in an original way. I give it seven fire emojis out of 10.
–Sage The Gemini is featured on this track and his named seemed familiar to me, so I did some research (again, Wikipedia). It turns out that Mr. Gemini is the monster who cursed us with both “Gas Pedal” and “Red Nose”. Really, guys? We’re just going to let those travesties go and allow him to continue making music? Wake up, America.
That’s What I Like (feat. Fitz)
-I’m not sure who this Fitz character is, but he sounds like a bad imitation of Enrique Iglesias. He could never be my hero. He shall henceforth be referred to as Fake Enrique.
-I’ve praised a lot of the musical parts on this record. There are some interesting things going on throughout. This is not one of them. The beat of this song sounds like a bad Sublime cover. The only way it could be worse is if it was a sample of an actual Sublime song.
-This song sounds very similar to “Celebrate” by Pitbull (please don’t ask how I knew that), even down to the little drum fill before the chorus. It’s strange, but I have a theory. I have reason to believe that Flo Rida and Pitbull are the same person. Think about it, have you ever seen them both in the same room? What’s that? You have? Interesting. I’m still not convinced. President Obama, if you’re reading this (and honestly, why wouldn’t you be?), I’d like a full investigation launched into uncovering the truth. Spare no expense. The public deserves to know.
-As this track (mercifully) comes to a conclusion, it employs arguably the strangest ending I’ve ever heard. It simply ends. No fade out. No final flourish. Just a hard cut of an ending. I had to look up and check that my computer hadn’t just shut it off at a random point, as if to say “All right, bro. That’s quite enough. What are you even doing with your life?” But no, that’s the end of the song. Even more, that’s the end of the record. It’s the audio equivalent of The Sopranos’ finale.
And with that abrupt conclusion, My House comes to an end. My final thoughts are simple: it’s not good. Flo Rida is not a good rapper. The hooks are often bland, especially for songs featuring bigger artists that are aimed for radio play. Some of the beats are enjoyable and don’t fall to the generic pitfalls of most mainstream pop/hip hop, but it can’t save it.
There you have it. I listened to the new Flo Rida album so you don’t have to. You’re welcome, humanity. Please notify me when my statue is unveiled.