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“Tickets To My Downfall” by Machine Gun Kelly is everything my tween emo-phase needed.
“Tickets To My Downfall” tempts me to regress to my blue-haired, messy eyeliner, black chipped nails days. Although I have outgrown my punk phase, I certainly enjoyed indulging in the gritty sound of Machine Gun Kelly’s latest album.
It is everything MGK is known for: loud, unapologetic and in your face.
Before I tackle the music in this album, the album art has to be addressed. It is simply so him and sets the tone for the whole album. MGK is pictured slouching over what looks to be a drained pool, with a bright pink guitar in hand. The text on the album cover looked like the Burn Book straight out of “Mean Girls,” which made this album connect to my younger, teenage self even more.
MGK not only showed off his talent with this album but he also put the spotlight on other artists. “my ex’s best friend” featuring blackbear stands out as one of the best power pairings on this album. It is less aggressive than some of MGK’s tracks, but it still has that edgy sound listeners expect from this pop punk artist. blackbear’s voice fits in perfectly with MGK’s sound and the guitar that carries the song along.
“nothing inside” featuring iann dior is another standout pairing. This song is the epitome of heartache, featuring the classic small-town-girl-in-the-big-city trope. MGK dives into the reality of being in a toxic relationship and navigating past trauma as he sings, “It’s been a long time since I was young/And she was the first face I was looking to call mine/She said it’s alright, had a couple of drinks/And I got issues we can fight about all night.” iann dior matches MGK’s energy and pain as their voices blend together perfectly.
Machine Gun Kelly allows the audience into his broken heart and lets listeners indulge in their teenage angst. The emotional component of this album is 100 per cent there; MGK connects with listeners and appeals to everyone’s angry side. Emotion is not the only aspect that sold me on this album though, MGK also delivers extremely powerful vocals and unmatched instrumentals.
MGK’s band, EST19XX, also makes this album worth the listen. The electric guitar and aggressive drums serve as the perfect backdrop to MGK’s vocals. The instrumentals in “body bad,” featuring YUNGBLUD and McCraken of The Used are insanely good. “kiss kiss” stands out as another song that simply wouldn’t have landed without EST 19XX’s crazy bridge and decisive notes that emphasize MGK’s vocals perfectly. EST 19XX brings a ridiculous amount of energy and intensity to “Tickets To My Downfall.”
I cannot stress this enough: even if you don’t usually like pop punk music you should give this album a listen. Anyone can appreciate MGK’s ability to pump out a full length album and have each song tell a unique story while sounding incredible throughout the entire play time.
This album makes me want to bring back fishnets under jeans (why did we ever think that was a good idea?), the drastic side swept bangs inspired by tumblr and pick a fight with my parents for no apparent reason.
Crank this album up next time you need some music therapy or need to release some bottled up anger.