Doja Cat – Scarlet, Album Review

Pop-rap icon Doja Cat returns to her roots after some backlash with fair-weather fans.

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Kam Jenkins Music Writer
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News flash. Doja Cat doesn’t owe us shit. Earlier this year, Doja let fans know how she felt about her own music. Essentially, she laughed off her last two studio albums, claiming they were cheap pop records. I see what she’s saying. However, I found myself bopping to a handful of her hits. Tracks like “Kiss Me More” and “Say So” highlight how far Doja’s pen has advanced over time. Personally, I enjoy her flashy blend of R&B, pop, and hip-hop. Yet with pop-level fame comes annoying fair-weather fans. People who think her career started when they began liking her music. “If I’ve never heard of it, it must not exist or must not be good, right?” Fucking ridiculous. She alludes to these fickle few across Scarlet‘s tracklist.

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Doja Cat via Instagram

I, for one, simply accept her for who she is. That doesn’t make me any better than them. I’m just sayin’ how it is. Artists deserve unconditional acceptance, in my opinion. Even if I think their music sucks eggs. Doja Cat, on the other hand, garners respect both from a technical and overall creative perspective. Sure, she’s brash and she’s freaky. But it all goes hand-in-hand when expressions are authentic. At its best, Scarlet hones in on Doja’s unapologetic transparency. Weaving hip-hop style raps back into her albums bodes well, in my view. Although I will always appreciate her pop penmanship, Doja boasts a unique raspy rap delivery equal parts unique and vibey. Don’t test her. Or she’ll spit her venom in your direction. I love that energy here.

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At its worst, Scarlet overlaps sonic ideas and reiterates sentiments already expressed in full. Additionally, some of her vocals featured slightly limp mixing. For example, I won’t deny that “Demons” has some real juice to it. It’s giving very “How you like me now?” type vibrations. I’m here for that. Nevertheless, the has-been distorted 808 bass production style left me wishing the mix filled more sonic space. At a party this hiccup will likely go completely unnoticed. Ultimately, it’s whatever. You won’t find me at one of those, though. So, for a headphone listener like myself, some of these tracks fail to leave a long-lasting impression. The same goes for “Wet Vagina” as well. As I’ve mentioned, I enjoy her silliness and comedic sex bars. Stretch them out over an hour, however, and I become slightly bored with them. Perhaps that’s just me.

Album Review: Doja Cat - Scarlet
Vocal Performance
Certified Bangers
Transparent Lyricism
Effective Genre Blending
Recycled Lyrical Themes
Bloated Tracklist
Sonic Overlap
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