'Hollywood's Bleeding' New Post Malone Album Review

Read DJ Louie Nyce's Latest Review!

September 11, 2019
Post Malone behind the scenes before his Bud Light Dive Bar Tour show in Nashville at Footsies Dive Bar on March 20, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.

© Rich Fury/Getty Images

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by Louie Nyce

“We’re runnin out reasons

But we can’t let go.

Hollywood is bleeding

But we call it home.”

Exactly one minute in to his new album, Post Malone groans those ominous words with his acoustic vocal start professing Tinseltown is more Heartbreak City. Before you can even sympathize with the scruffy Sinatra, he hits you with that intoxicating head nodding trap thump, forcing you to swiftly forget his distress — the only way he can, and the only way he wants.

That conundrum is fought throughout Posty’s third studio album, aptly titled, Hollywood’s Bleeding. The project plays out more like a 1550’s Shakespeare play than a 2019 mainstream album. It’s more 17 stanzas than 17 songs. Like most English Renaissance work, you know the protagonist of the story is headed for inevitable doom, but there is always beauty found in the destruction.

Post Malone is the modern-day melodic czar and he has a way of masking gore with groove. After morosely professing Hollywood is home, he continues to captivate you with the kicks, snares and high hats on the opening title track.

“Howl at the moon

And go to sleep in the day.

Love for everybody,

’Til the drugs fade away,”

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As raw an emotion as ever, it's become a prevalent tone for thousands of young people from Hollywood’s coast to coast, Cali to the Sunshine State. That’s what makes Austin Richard Post so relatable, he refuses to be the ‘pop star’ the world is forcing him to be. Posty proves that sentiment with three of his songs —Sunflower, Wow, and Goodbyes, all peaking on the Billboard Hot 100 Top 5 and Hollywood’s Bleeding is on track to sell 500k copies in its first week!

That mega number shouldn’t come as a surprise, Posty is 2019 in the flesh, appealing to the masses. He just soulfully confesses his struggles through buoyant melodies.

As he defiantly brags in his raspy voice on his track with Meek Mill and Lil Baby, "On the Road"...

 

“...they ain’t ever seein me fold under pressure

they ain’t, never seen me fold, nah, never!”

 

As of right now, he’s right! Hollywood’s Bleeding is not a rap album.

Posty will aggressively defend and rebuke the moniker ‘rapper.’ By his admission, realistic or not, he insists he’s not a rapper.

It’s also not a pop album. It’s simply a... Post Malone album. An album only he can create and only he can seriously get away with. No boundaries. None of your f*ckin rules. His genre-twisting line is as blade-thin sharp as the barb wire engraved across his forehead.

He’s the rare breed of crass meets class.

Don’t be fooled, the bleeding isn’t solely related to pain and pills, those Hollywood vices are also provocative and full of pleasure as he boasts on the following track, a trap pop tune, titled "Saint Tropez"...

 

“Versace on my d*ck

Bud Light running through my piss

On a yacht, 50 meters, it’s a fish

50 carats on my fist.”

 

Tucked into the vulnerability, Posty can’t help but to tell you that his life is also pretty damn good.

"Saint Tropez" is a braggadocio- ode to his lavish lifestyle, likening himself to ‘Bradley’ Pitt, while unapologetically apologizing to his mom for his sins. The album is a 51 minute testimony chronicling the unyielding battle between his dysphoria and the penthouse party in the Hills he can’t seem to leave.

Enemies, recruits Da Baby, the hottest MC on the planet, to trade tales of how people (mostly women) maltreat them as their famematures. Going bar for bar with the man behind Suge, showing he can rap, even though “he’s not a rapper.” He’s quick to remind us of that on the very next song, "Allergic".

He channels back to his boyhood roots and transforms into a punk-rocker (seemingly also influenced by the 1950’s). Its a mosh pit-friendly tune you would find on a late 90’s Drive Thru Records album slowly climbing up the TRL countdown.

He bellows out ...

“Wasted on Sunday

Erase you on Monday.”

 

Notice a theme?

Posty then takes us in "Circles", an alt-leaning tune, which pays homage to his favorite band, Nirvana. In the spirit of Cobain, Posty says ‘Nevermind’ and angles back to the fact that he’s still locked in a Heart-Shaped Box and full of heartache.

But as he always does, he turns that inner hurt into a global hit. The magic is in the mess and that’s what he does best. The features are selective, amidst the unlikely pairings, they stay on brand for the histrionic 24-year-old.

Featuring fellow artists, who are perched right beside him atop the Billboard Hot 100, they join Posty for a pity party that makes hurt sound so good, you want to chase after it too. Posty links with Future and Halsey on the heartbreak anthem, "Die for Me".

The trio revel in their hurt and per her Halsey self, she steals the show by confidently conceding to being the most damaged, while dealing with it the best.

She savagely admits...

“I don’t play anymore

I went through your phone.

And called the girls in your DM’s

And took them all home.”

Well, DAMN!

And she continues...

“I sold 15 million copies of a break-up note.”

Honestly, why even be happy anymore?

Tears pay better!

In another prominent collaboration, Posty recruits Travis Scott and The Prince of Darkness, Ozzy Osbourne. The Hybrid Theory-esque collaboration bridges musical worlds and it’s everything we didn’t know we needed. A gentle guitar strum starts off the song, fit for an 80's metal band ballad. Right on cue, Ozzy appears through the smoke, auto-tuned on the hook, pleading with his apathetic lover to ‘Take What You Want’. The gloomy song satisfies the very nature of the experiment, which concludes with a exhilarating :45 second guitar shred only Black Sabbath can originate.

Whether Posty’s trading narratives with fellow tortured hitmakers or crooning with us solo about his shattered soul and thousand dollar Crocs, his third studio album lets you into his world... sort of. His mutability is exactly what you expect from his work and what his fans demand, so by those standards and HIS standards — he delivered.

Hollywood’s, in fact, Bleeding and the blood is flowing at a menacing rate. But for Posty — there’s too much jewelry to buy, too much heartache to feel and quite frankly, too much Bud Light to drink — to worry about it right now!

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