Reviews

The Kid LAROI “THE FIRST TIME” Album Review

THE FIRST TIME

The Kid LAROI

  • Genre: Pop
  • Date: 09 Nov, 2023
  • Content: cleaned
  • Track(s): 20
  • ℗ 2023 Columbia Records, a Division of Sony Music Entertainment

“THE FIRST TIME,” the much awaited debut album by Australian rapper, singer, and composer The Kid LAROI has been released. Although some fans would argue that the “F*ck Love” trilogy was the artist’s first release, “THE FIRST TIME” is the artist’s first full-length album, with 20 tracks and collaborations from Jungkook, Central Cee, Future, Robert Glasper, and D4VD.

One cool highlight of the album “THE FIRST TIME” is its spoken word interludes from friends and family, including Justin Bieber, sharing tales about their lives and loves. Despite LAROI’s assurances to fans about changing his ways, the 20 tracks that form “THE FIRST TIME” offer little evidence of musical development.

Album Cover Art

The Kid Laroi &Quot;The First Time&Quot; Album Review, Yours Truly, Reviews, April 21, 2024

The official album cover for The Kid LAROI’s first studio album, THE FIRST TIME, has him sitting in front of Ryley Ladd (right) and Sophia Pienta (left), with a mask resting on his tummy. The photo was taken by Ramez and Moni Haworth. The Kid LAROI claims that the concepts, cover art, and album aesthetics were influenced by the 90s movie KIDS,

The album’s announcement and the cover’s dilapidated location seem to reinforce the cover’s intriguing concept, which seems to center on the moment LAROI initially thought he was going to die.

Tracks and Features

The upbeat album opener “Sorry,” produced by FNZ and BoogzDaBeast, apologizes for being stuck while high, while “Bleed,” which again plays with alt-pop and indie pop, asks cynically how other people’s hearts heal so quickly while his is still bleeding.

One of the finest instrumentals on the album is found on “I Thought That I Needed You,” when BNYX and F1LTHY lament about a relationship that was lost almost a year ago. “Where Do You Sleep?” is a song co-produced by Dez Wright that asks an unidentified ex-partner where she stays these days while blending synthesizers and even a soul sample.

The Weeknd’s “Starboy” is the inspiration behind his most recent megahit, “Too Much,” which features BTS members Jung Kook and Central Cee. The song doesn’t seem to belong on the project any more than it did when it was a single. Central Cee’s reflective verse, the pinnacle of an otherwise futile attempt to combine three fan bases to increase a song’s popularity, outperforms LAROI.

Even though the song “Sorry” is filled with monotonous lyrics about money and his ex, it makes good use of chopped-up soul sounds. And over some John Cunningham acoustics, “Tear Me Apart” has LAROI melodramatically confessing for hurting his woman. Clams Casino adds a psychedelic touch to “Nights Like This” following the “Strangers” interlude. The interlude in which LAROI desires the love of his life to stay with him.

“What’s the Move” with BabyDrill and Future brings three great musicians together over a soulful trap rhythm to ask their significant ones to marry them. Following another “Strangers” interlude, “Call Me Instead” featuring YoungBoy Never Broke Again takes a piano-driven turn, addressing lovers in their lives whose hearts they no longer have a hold on.

While “What Went Wrong???” is a more intense instrumental reflecting on a past relationship that ended, “The Line,” featuring D4VD, devolves into a less intense atmosphere as the two take a trip down memory lane exploring the themes of previous relationships. “What Just Happened?” shifts to an alt/pop-rock path, where he acknowledges that he’s not sure if his relationship has violated any boundaries.

“You” is an upbeat song with keys, kicks, and snares that talks about how he and his girlfriend’s relationship wasn’t working out until it did. Over a beautiful folk pop instrumental, “Love Again” laboriously depicts the picture of a toxic love-hate relationship.

The album’s last track, “Kids Are Growing Up,” follows the interlude “You Never Forget Your First Time…” and closes Kid Laroi’s debut album on a deeply mature note by showcasing his vulnerability and personal development over an aquatic beat. In particular, he talks of losing his uncle Wayne, quitting school in the ninth grade, and thanking his mother for her strength in trying circumstances.

Tracklist

NO TITLE ARTIST TIME
1 SORRY The Kid LAROI 3:12
2 BLEED The Kid LAROI 2:49
3 I THOUGHT THAT I NEEDED YOU The Kid LAROI 2:51
4 WHERE DO YOU SLEEP? The Kid LAROI 3:12
5 TOO MUCH The Kid LAROI, Jung Kook & Central Cee 3:23
6 TEAR ME APART The Kid LAROI 1:54
7 STRANGERS (Interlude) The Kid LAROI 0:25
8 NIGHTS LIKE THIS The Kid LAROI 1:26
9 WHAT’S THE MOVE? The Kid LAROI, Future & BabyDrill 3:19
10 STRANGERS PT 2 (Interlude) The Kid LAROI 0:43
11 CALL ME INSTEAD (feat. YoungBoy Never Broke Again & Robert Glasper) The Kid LAROI 3:17
12 DESERVE YOU The Kid LAROI 2:37
13 WHAT WENT WRONG??? The Kid LAROI 2:37
14 THE LINE The Kid LAROI & d4vd 2:32
15 WHAT JUST HAPPENED The Kid LAROI 2:42
16 YOU The Kid LAROI 2:16
17 LOVE AGAIN The Kid LAROI 2:26
18 WHERE DOES YOUR SPIRIT GO? The Kid LAROI 3:25
19 YOU NEVER FORGET YOUR FIRST TIME… The Kid LAROI 2:04
20 KIDS ARE GROWING UP The Kid LAROI 4:20

Album Theme

As a young Australian white boy, he bravely explores American hip-hop throughout “THE FIRST TIME,” never holding back in his attempt to sound like someone walking the fine line between love and heartbreak. The Kid LAROI is a prime example of the amazing things that are possible when an artist is at ease with who they are.

Production Credits

Producers on the new album include AuzTheKid, Benny Bock, Billy Walsh, Blake Slatkin, BNYX, BoogzDaBeast, Cirkut, Clams Casino, Dez Wright, Dopamine, Emile Haynie, F1LTHY, Fallwood, FNZ, Jasper Harris, Jim-E Stack, John Cunningham, Keanu Beats, The Kid LAROI, and many more names.

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