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Volcanic Bird Enemy and the Voiced Concern

by Lil Ugly Mane

Released October 12, 2021

Reviewed December 6, 2021

Top tracks (based on community voting)
headboard (47%), benadryl submarine (41%), porcelain slightly (39%)

Lil Ugly Mane has never shied away from placing the problems that extend beyond his music at the forefront of his art. Volcanic Bird Enemy and the Voiced Concern, however, is his most vivid and raw exploration of that process in quite some time. LUM has always been so in control of his music, both thematically and sonically; such a passionate project requires deep self-exploration. His cadence is tired, but the songwriting wouldn’t deliver the same gut-punching essence without such a vocal inflection. It’s weirdly soulful, in an extremely genuine way. Volcanic Bird Enemy and the Voiced Concern creates a strange world that takes human atrophy to its fullest extent, but drapes it over instrumentals that can be either whimsical, or as brooding as the man who made them. The result is without a doubt one of the best albums of the year. Not only that, it is one of the most vulnerable records from an artist who’s defined an entire decade of music. – Ben (Synth) (9/10)

While he has always been off-beat, Lil Ugly Mane fully embraces that sentiment on his latest record. Filled to the brim with contradictions, Volcanic Bird Enemy and the Voiced Concern takes you through a world so horrifyingly pretty, yet awe-inspiringly grotesque, that you can’t take your ears away from it. Contorting what would normally be happy sounds into the obscene—and vice versa—Lil Ugly Mane presents a world that’s familiar, yet uncanny and uncomfortable. Tales of drug-fueled depression are laid on top of unbelievably gorgeous shoegaze-tinged pop, while the depravities of the world envelope a hopeful message. This new sound is not yet fully honed but I can see him creating a masterpiece with it soon enough. – Jared (8.5/10)

Lil Ugly Mane's sound takes yet another turn, while remaining unquestionably Ugly Mane. The style may have changed, but his unique characteristics remain the same. The submerged world in which LUM finds himself on Volcanic Bird is sonically Dali-esque, warped and somewhat unfastened from time itself. His inherent ability to turn silly sounding things into serious tones and soundscapes is nothing short of mind boggling; he turns mockery into mastery. Very few can do this without becoming condescending. We are on the receiving end of a creative essence that exists in its own topsy-turvy world, that is run by a different set of rules, and beats to a different set of drums. With this offering, Lil Ugly Mane's discography becomes even more eccentric. – Peter (8.5/10)

Ben (Synth): 9/10 | Cam: 8.5/10 | Dominick: 8.5/10 | Hadley: 8.5/10

Jared: 8.5/10 | Peter: 8.5/10 | DeVán: 6.5/10


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