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Album Review: Bebe Rexha's "Better Mistakes"

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"Confessional, unapologetic and underwhelming."

(two minute read)

Bebe Rexha could be easily recognized as one of the most innovative artists, merging the alternative influences of pop and hip-hop to the modern music scene. And with the immense success of country/hip-hop hybrid, Meant To Be, she has once again proved her artistic vision of bridging between genres. Which brings us to her second studio album, Better Mistakes, describing it as a confession of her insecurities, mental struggles and self-doubt.

The lead single, Baby, I'm Jealous, was released on October 9, 2020, featuring Doja Cat. It was followed by Sacrifice and Sabotage, unveiling the album's tracklist on her social media page on April 15th. Then the collaborations with Ty Dolla $ign and Trevor Daniel, My Dear Love, was released alongside the album on May 7th.

With the short running time of the tracks — mostly not even exceeding three (03:00) minutes, it is somewhat a letdown how the lyricism lacks variety and ranges. The repetitive choruses are too spacious as they dominate the dynamics of the tracks, leaving less momentum for the verses to stride. Regardless of the obvious flaw, the album masters the extreme ways of how Rexha copes with her struggles as she suggestively jabs; "I should dye my hair / I should f—k my ex / I should lose my phone / Better mistakes" on the title track, Better Mistakes.

In addition, the 'supposedly' contemplative tracks are interesting at first listen, but not compelling enough to signify their raw lyricism and intentions; Sabotage and Empty for instance — these tracks carry a mellow paced verse, but ultimately fail with the whining delivery of their choruses. The sample track, Mama, is also an embarrassment, in spite of the ambitious intention to emulate the arena-esque appeal of Freddy Mercury.

The ups and 'mostly' downs of the production value has widely populated the album. To resent the distasteful collaborations with the hip-hop artists, $ign and Daniel, in My Dear Love — they complement themselves with high doses of trap sound. In contrast, the club-oriented tracks like Baby, I'm Jealous and Sacrifice have tone-switch the trap-heavy collection of the record. On The Go also shares an enlivening break from the cohesion; the acoustic elements of the track have melded a safe chemistry between Rexha, Sweat$ and Lunay.

Death Row is strikingly one of the album's highlights. Despite the shaky and weird vocals on the verses, it outstandingly funked-up the chorus, having a late 2000s rock inspiration — a replay-worthy. Amore is also a huge nod with its  Italian influences fused with the hip-hop genre, the track is bearable and has great dynamics. And even though Die For A Man may be 'your' usual urban track, the monotonous to anticlimactic progression has smoothly jammed a slow-burning vibe.

Better Mistakes has served its very own purpose to confess Rexha's hardships as an artist, lover and woman — albeit the lack of stronger material. However, with the trap-oriented sound of the current pop music, producing an album with the similar influence could be dire-hit. And Better Mistakes shows the inevitable misstep of going to the trend, as it only has a few prominent and alternative tracks to compel its listeners.


Rating: 5/10

Favorite Tracks:

   Death Row
   Die For A Man
   On The Go
   Baby, I'm Jealous

Least Favorite Tracks:

   My Dear Love
   Trust Fall

What y'all think of the album?bebe-review.jpg.0e0b5da750f774742f898166bf7cd7b6.jpg

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6 hours ago, dritney said:

Bebe fills the sonic void Britney has left in the pop music scene.

That's too much of a statement but Bebe has always had a veeeeery pop sound and attitude that very little artists have and keep nourishing, like Britney. I guess we can say Bebe is holding down the fortress while Britney is away.

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43 minutes ago, JSDSandiego said:

The album is def a mood, it has a good vibe with semi-deep lyrics. The only track i deleted from my playlists is 'On the Go'.

The album isn't that hard to like. Few days had already passed and it actually grew on me. If I could, I wouldn't have a second thought changing some parts of my review. Mama and My Dear Love are still my skips.

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