EP Review: The Last TextWonkeyDude98 Mini-Description: In my third EP review, I take out the trash and review Jacob Sartorius. This might get ugly.
Best Song: "All My Friends"
Worst Songs: "Bingo", "Jordans", "Last Text", "Sweatshirt (remix)"
I've not been looking forward to this.
There are certain reviews, like the ones for Shawn Mendes and Rae Sremmurd, where while there are a lot of people who hate them, not everyone has yet seen the unmasking of their respectively manipulative and mindboggling facades, I had a reason to review them.
But this? No.
I'm reviewing Jacob Sartorius here.
If you've been on the Internet, you've at least heard of Jacob Sartorius, a young teen who decided it was a good idea to resurrect the spirit of Jason Mraz or John Mayer and combine it with Rebecca Black. Now, I hate Sweatshirt as much as the next guy, but even if you forget the fact that his two followups weren't THAT bad, no one deserves as much hate as he's gotten. No one.
That said... Last Text broke me on him and all of a sudden any potential the kid might have had was gone in favor of creepy, stalkerish dreck with no charm or wit. That gave me no hope of his new EP of the same name being of any quality. Was I right?
To be blunt, yes. The Last Text is pretty much exactly what you can expect from a Jacob Sartorius record. It's easily the worst thing I've heard this year, a shallow, lazy cash-grab designed to pick up chicks and it can't even do that right!
To know how that happened, I want to come straight to lyrics. And sure, you could make the argument that Jacob is young and doesn't know better, or you could make the counter-argument that, forget the fact that he needs to steal outdated motifs (biggest examples are Desiigner on Hit Or Miss and every 2000s pop rap song on Bingo) in order to even have cred, he comes off like a vile, creepy tool in the same way Shawn Mendes did on his last album Illuminate.
Right from the first song, the title track, we get that impression. Forget the fact that using text as a self-unaware device to show you love someone is just pathetic, you state that she is the LAST text he sends before bed. If you really cared about her, shouldn't she be the FIRST thing on your mind? Sure, By Your Side is mostly banal, but even that has a first verse where Jacob tells this girl to give him a hint (if she was really invested in running away with you she would have done that already), and then says that she'll "never leave him". That's...more than a little unsettling.
But then this album hits its absolute worst on Bingo, where Jacob admittedly stalks a girl's Instagram and spams her DMs until she follows him, and then knowing that she lives in the same city as him, has her give him head after school. This has gone past the questionable sex lines on Sweatshirt (we'll get to that later), and beginning to reach the levels of Selfie by Mark Thomas, a song by a Justin Bieber ripoff about underage sexting! It's easily one of the worst songs I've heard thus far in 2017.
It might seem like it cools down on the mildly annoying Love Me Back, but then the EP picks right back up on Jordans, which really isn't memorable aside from the fact that it's a song where JACOB COMPARES HIS GIRL TO SHOES. The album does hit its one point of genuine harmlessness on All My Friends, which might be so inoffensive that it's underwritten, and I'd argue Hit Or Miss is okay compared to the rest of the album, even if the chorus is mind-bogglingly generic (forget the extremely annoying unfinished stuttering) and the fact that he's picking up a girl whose name he doesn't even know.
But then...we come to the Sweatshirt remix. I can't say I have a ton of rage for this song after everything I've heard, but it still makes me sick. The first line that rips right from Drake, the fact that he wants this girl to "flaunt it", the fact that Jacob now joins Thomas Rhett in the land of people who make creepy songs about shirts, it's gross and the stripped back production doesn't help.
Now, given that Jacob is 13, he's gotta at least have some natural likability to make up for his lack of vocal talent, right? Nope! His voice is nowhere near as past his age as 2009 Justin Bieber, but he has even less personality. Again, he has to steal early 2000s pop-rap motifs to even look relevant. At least Rebecca Black had songs with better vocals after Friday! His nasal dead-eyed drone does nothing to give his otherwise unsettling lyrical content a sense of romance or even twisted sensuality. He fits somewhere between Drake and Post Malone (the latter of whom ironically sounds like Justin Bieber), and his rapping...yikes. His rhymes are terrible, his flow is either awkward or Migos, and he's just not convincing at all.
And any of that could have been saved if the production were any good, but...well, it's a teen pop EP. That's not inherently to disparage teen pop budgets, Carly Rae Jepsen's Emotion Side B was awesome. But the problem is there's no budget to how this sounds. It's cheap, lazy, and barely functioning, with acoustic guitars and trap snares being the main focus when Jacob doesn't take a sound that's not his. That's apparent right from the title track, with the plucky guitars that fill in a mix that feels painfully quiet and barren, until it gets overstuffed with painfully weak percussion. Sure, By Your Side is sonically decent with the hazy guitars and claps that build into a pretty ambient tropical groove until the pitchy drop, until you realize that it's basically the more reverb-heavy version of Cold Water by Major Lazer and Justin Bieber!
Then we come to Bingo and its aggressively sharp piano chords against some of the most irritating trap snares on the album, not helped by easily one of the worst bridges I've heard all year with the plinking marimbas and unusually terrible pitch-shifting. Or Love Me Back, which has a guitar line I kinda didn't hate until you realize that it steals from Shawn Mendes' Kid In Love wholesale, and translates onto an obnoxiously fake trumpet line. But easily one of the worst cases of this album's cheapness is on Jordans, which actually starts off with a pretty decent swell of tropical synth before Jacob sing-raps jacking part of the MIGOS FLOW (not the only comparison he and Thomas Rhett have) on a beat that's entirely built on very jumpy, awkward trap snares. The remix of Sweatshirt is slightly better than the original, if not just because it's listenable at all, but you could argue that the change in tone makes the lyrics feel even creepier, replacing the garbage disposal beat and screechy synth for a whispery, close feel that really just turns my stomach.
That said...some elements mostly come together. Jordans could have worked if it stuck with the cloudy haze of synth, and All My Friends (easily the best song on the EP) actually does coast on a pretty good tropical beat with gleamy synths and a swinging snap. Even Hit Or Miss (which is still a a bad song) kinda works for the pitchy squonking horn fragments that break across a pretty lightweight trap beat.
But most people, they already know Jacob Sartorius has no talent, so what's the big deal? Well, it's because, even by the standards of involuntary trash, it's not even really memorable or interesting in any way. The whole EP is just normal enough to be forgettable, but just bad enough so it's still torture.
Again, what reason did I have to do this? What was there to gain by wasting my time with this garbage? Do I even need to say it? Are any of you surprised by a light 2/10 and zero recommendation? What is life? Who is life? Should I end it all? Yeah, I should.
This is WonkeyDude98, and I apologize for this taking so long, I've been both busy and bored, this was so hard to even think about. Anyways, P.O.S is next.
I haven't heard the album yet, nor do I have any intentions to do so. I'm just glad Rebecca Black improved over the years. Now we need someone to do a mega rant on Sam Hunt's Drinkin Too Much because that song needs one. I'm starting to question whether it really is better than Juju on that Beat (lyrically, at least). - visitor
Trust me, I have my piece ready for that atrocious dreck ready for December.
It's gonna be almost as long as this review. - WonkeyDude98
Why are singers like these always overrated? Good review - Martinglez
Bingo is the 3rd best song here lol - ProPanda
It's the worst lol - WonkeyDude98
Jacob Sartorious is way worse then Justin Bieber - visitor
Still better than Mark Thomas? - Klauzy
Maybe the tiniest bit. - WonkeyDude98
Top 10 Anime of 2017 - visitor
Piranha - AlphaQ
Wait, you actually listened to an entire EP by Jacob Sartorious?! Woah, be a bit kinder to yourself, man lol - UltimateHybridX