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REVIEW: Mac Miller wraps up his career with ‘Circles’

By Lucy Lisberg

The death of a musician does not necessarily mean the death of their music career. After passing away in September of 2018, Mac Miller still had songs that were yet to be released to his fans. Luckily this past January, his new album Circles caught the attention of many listeners. It’s a way for his fans to remember him and his kind, lighthearted soul. This album is one of Miller’s best and is the type of music that anyone can listen to and enjoy.

The album Circles was made as a companion album to his prior one known as Swimming, which was released in August 2018. It was to portray the concept “Swimming in Circles.” The words in the songs are a story on how Miller viewed his life and about how he was doing in the final years before his tragic death. According to his family and friends, he was doing great in life both mentally and physically right before the time of the accident. This poses a very emotional idea for his fans that listen to this and mourn his loss. Although, this did not stop the creation of the work he had left unfinished.

He created this album alongside famous composer Jon Brion. After his death, Brion completed what they had started and released the final album in January of 2020. They took more of a slow and relaxed approach when creating this album. For most people, when they think of a rapper’s music, they don’t envision the type of beats that he includes in his songs. That’s one of the things that makes Miller special. A few of the songs on this album sound a little more R&B rather than rap, such as Complicated and Hand Me Downs, yet they still blend with the flow of the album as a whole and mix well with the other tracks. They also succeeded in having a similar rhythm as the album Swimming, since the two coincide with one another. They use a lot of unique beats throughout each track, and take a creative approach to the song Blue World by incorporating original sounds from the 1950 song It’s A Blue World by The Four Freshmen. The songs definitely all blend well together, while still mixing in a few different genres of music throughout.

This album is more than just music. It’s a story of survival written by an artist whose life was a rollercoaster. It’s Miller’s way of relating to the many people out there who are not doing okay but inspiring them with his songs that explain how to look on the bright side of things and make the most with what is given. In his song Everybody he sings, “Everybody’s gotta live, and everybody’s gonna die, but everybody just wanna have a good, good time, I think you know the reason why.”

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