As if 2020 couldn’t get any weirder — Machine Gun Kelly is now taking over the pop-punk genre. 

The rapper has been known to expand his horizons (see his work as Tommy Lee in the Motley Crue biopic, The Dirt) but none of his ventures have ever been as awe-inspiring as his first three releases from his upcoming album, Tickets To My Downfall. All three singles were jaw-droppingly great and shocking content to come from the artist. 

The first is “bloody valentine,” which, from the moment it begins to play, brings nostalgic memories of an early 2000s Jimmy Eat World-esque sound. The rapid guitar playing with a steady moving drum beat makes the perfect backing track for MGK’s newfound angsty vocals. 

MGK says, “I can’t stay forever; let’s play pretend / And treat this night like it’ll happen again / You’ll be my bloody valentine tonight.” The story of MGK hoping for something real and special with a lover is a noticeable 180-turn away from his accounts of betrayal on his 2019 album, Hotel Diablo

The second single, “concert for aliens,” seems to take inspiration from bands like The All-American Rejects and All Time Low, with that upbeat punk sound. He uses distorted, rough vocals to send out an “S.O.S.” as the world seems to be ending. This song, over all the others, is almost the exact definition of the pop-punk genre. 

Finally, the third single featuring blackbear, “my ex’s best friend,” deviates from the pop-punk genre and blends in a bit more with MGK’s typical style. More accurately, it sounds like a blackbear song that MGK was featured on, rather than the other way around. 

MGK says, “I swear to God, I never fall in love / Then you showed up, and I can’t get enough of it.” It’s a brilliant examination of the complexities of new love, especially with the web of knowing exes and intertwining between friend groups. 

All together, these three singles are enough to generate a ridiculous amount of excitement for the album’s release on Sept. 25. Until then, stream these three singles for clear skin.

@rileyr44

rr855317@ohio.edu