Post Malone - Twelve Carat Toothache (Red/Black)

Regular price $ 39.99

The harsh hangover to Hollywood's Bleeding, Post Malone's fourth full-length outing, Twelve Carat Toothache, is a brutally honest confessional that hammers the point home that fame isn't all it's cracked up to be. He's working through a lot -- lamenting bad decisions, relationship woes, and struggles with drinking -- but, as usual, he delivers this less-than-chipper material with deceptively catchy hooks and engrossing production. "Emo rap" is too reductive a tag for his melodic skill and ability to craft an earworm, but Toothache does lean hard into that moody, self-pitying, and dour territory, a tortured and vulnerable point of view that is put on full display in opener "Reputation." With his signature quavering trill, he cries, "I'm the same damn fool.... I know I f*cked up and I can't make it right." No matter how many platinum plaques and chart-topping hits, Post is still human, flaws and all. That sentiment carries throughout the set to various extremes, but the variation comes mainly with his production choices, which shift from straight-ahead rap to mainstream pop and surprising guitar-backed dramatics. "Cooped Up" with Roddy Ricch and "I Cannot Be (A Sadder Song)" with Gunna will sate the old-school fans with thick, slapping beats and slick verses, while the haunted "Insane" is a hard-hitting burst of self-loathing and casual misogyny, with irresistibly hazy atmospherics reminiscent of Travis Scott. Meanwhile, "Euthanasia" rides a sparse heart-monitor blip-beat, building tension without ever providing a sweet release (a voice-memo demo of the track, "New Recording 12, Jan 3, 2020," closes the album).

On the poppier, radio-friendly end of the spectrum, Post flexes his hitmaking muscles with the breezy, pop-punk-lite of "When I'm Alone"; the neon funhouse duet with Doja Cat "I Like You (A Happier Song)"; the Kid LAROI-featuring "Wasting Angels"; and the "Circles"-redux hit-in-waiting "Wrapped Around Your Finger." Of course, "One Right Now" with the Weeknd -- already a Top Ten, platinum-certified hit at the time of the album's release -- is also included. Beyond the mainstream-ready highlights and mournful rap, Toothache's most interesting moments continue to tease Post's potential shift to more guitar-based alternative, as heard on the downcast "Lemon Tree," a pensive acoustic number that drops country twang amidst sour lines like "Life is pretty sweet I'm told," and the standout track "Love/Hate Letter to Alcohol" featuring Robin Pecknold of Fleet Foxes. Through an eerie curtain of layered vocals and cinematic production, Post shares unflinching details of his inebriated setbacks and his complicated relationship with his vices. Teeth and booze on the floor, it's an exciting hint at what could be if he committed to this style for a future album. While the rap-preferring fans will still gravitate to his first two efforts, listeners with an appreciative ear for his genre-sampling maturation into the mainstream will find Twelve Carat Toothache to be a fascinating emotional exploration of a conflicted artist who can't help but churn out star-making hits at the expense of his own happiness.

Red & Black Marble Vinyl

Post Malone– Reputation 4:08
Post Malone– Cooped Up 3:14
Post Malone– Lemon Tree 4:09
Post Malone– Wrapped Around Your Finger 3:16
Post Malone– I Like You (A Happier Song) 3:15
Post Malone– I Cannot Be (A Sadder Song) 2:57
Post Malone– Insane 2:52
Post Malone– Love/ Hate Letter To Alcohol 3:05
Post Malone– Wasting Angels 4:09
Post Malone– Euthanasia 2:32
Post Malone– When I'm Alone 3:23
Post Malone– Waiting For A Miracle 2:23
Post Malone & The Weeknd– One Right Now 3:12
Post Malone– New Recording 12, Jan 3 2020 1:35