Machine Gun Kelly clearly has demons in his life that he needs to address. In “Hotel Diablo,” it seems like he’s ready to take them all on from every musical angle he’s capable of dabbling in.
TOP 5 SONGS
“5:3666” is hella introspective. On it, MGK gives the world a preview of his troublesome world full of drug-usage, distasteful company and depressing thoughts. Though the track has this numbing feel to it when it comes to both the instrumental and hook, I find MGK’s verses highly enjoyable, mainly because he is clear and vivid with his thoughts on them.
If I had the type of thoughts MGK has floating through his head, I wouldn’t be able to sleep for weeks either (S**t, I already can’t sleep not knowing where Kawhi Leonard is going to end up).
4. FLOOR 13
“Floor 13” is pretty edgy. The instrumental that powers the song is dark and rock-heavy, and over this instrumental, MGK lets listeners know that he’s officially had enough of his critics’ harsh assessments. Initially, the Cleveland rapper utilizes a tongue-twisting rap approach on his verses, but as the song goes on, he focuses on more of a possessed sound to get his message of resiliency across.
Ya’ll hear MGK’s low-key Eminem disses on this song? I definitely heard him say “Killshot” missed him.
3. GLASS HOUSE
“Glass House” is pretty deep. On it, Machine Gun Kelly talks about the struggles he’s been facing to live life happily these last couple of years, and in the process, he brings up the untimely demises of Nipsey Hussle, Mac Miller and Lil Peep. What I love about the track is that MGK is all-the-way real on it, as he documents his drug-usage, thoughts of suicide and lost relationships throughout. On the real, I almost teared up listening to this joint.
2. EL DIABLO
“el diablo” is a trap banger that has Machine Gun Kelly taking his fair amount of shots at foes and hoes. While I love how energetic he sounds on the song, I think it’s his confident bars that stands out to me the most. With that being said, Kelly needs to be drug-tested if he thinks he deserves to be mentioned with the greats like he suggests he should be on his second verse on this song.
This song is Machine Gun Kelly letting us know that he’s unkillable (Like Jason).
1. HOLLYWOOD WHORE
“Hollywood Whore” is intense. The explosive track is powered by this high-octane instrumental that features some hard-hitting drumming and lots of emotional feels. Over this instrumental, Machine Gun Kelly talks about his woes (Fake friends, foiled relationships and haters), not holding back a single sentiment or insult when it comes to each. What I love about this song is that MGK doesn’t approach s**t with his usual tongue-twisting flows or heinous rapping, instead, he takes his time delivering his lines, making sure we hear each and every one of them.
For those who hate on Machine Gun Kelly, there’s nothing to hate on in this song.
SONG BY SONG BREAKDOWN
1. SEX DRIVE (N/A)
2. EL DIABLO (5/5)
3. HOLLYWOOD WHORE (5/5)
4. GLASS HOUSE (5/5)
5. BURNING MEMORIES (4/5)
6. A MESSAGE FROM THE COUNT (N/A)
7. FLOOR 13 (4/5)
8. ROULETTE (4/5)
9. TRUCK NORRIS (N/A)
10. DEATH IN MY POCKET (4/5)
11. CANDY (4/5)
12. WASTED LOVE (5/5)
13. 5:3666 (5/5)
14. I THINK I AM OK (4/5)
“Hotel Diablo” is a beautiful fusion between rock and rap music. Neither genre is abused on the album, and in my opinion, that was something MGK struggled with in the past. But let’s be honest, what makes this album borderline special is how emotional it is.
After going through a rough couple of years (Mainly last year), it seems like MGK was finally interested in finding a healthier walk of life. In order to do so, he had to confront some of his past and present demons — This is where “Hotel Diablo” comes into play. On “Hotel Diablo,” MGK talks about suicide, drug-usage, shaky friends and harsh critics, never showing fear or reluctance when it comes to displaying his true feelings about each. While the Cleveland native has always been an unruly rapper, I felt like the unruliness you got on this album came with a lot more honest/concise/clear/vivid thoughts. For once, it seemed like MGK was prepared to step down a couple of notches to become relatable, and in the process, he ended up denouncing his fairy-tale life of raging, sex and drug-abuse. No need to worry fans of Machine Gun, you still get moments in which he loses his s**t over an out-of-control instrumental — it’s just more tastefully done this time around.
Simply judging from a rap standpoint, I was hella impressed with what MGK was able to do on “Hotel Diablo.” Not only were his verses concise/clear/vivid (Like I stated up top), but they were also filled with steady flows and sneaky clever word-play. I’ve always thought that MGK was an underrated rapper, so I wasn’t as surprised that he nailed this aspect of the album.
I promise to you that I am not being paid by Machine Gun Kelly’s camp (I also gave his previous album a fair rating). Like I stated in my Jaden review from earlier tonight, I appreciate when a musician shows off their artistic side, so to hear MGK’s artistic side combined with his vulnerable side fully manifest itself on this album was hella intriguing to listen to.
Quincy is the creator of Ratings Game Music. He loves writing about music, taking long walks on beaches, and spaghetti that fights him back.