I have been listening to Circles non-stop since it came out earlier this week and a thought has been bouncing around in my head:
Mac has bridged the gap in which most artists tend to not be capable of which is taking inner monologues and depressive thoughts and putting them to paper in a direct way. Sad Music lives in a world of metaphors and similes, Circles however lives in a world of direct statements. For an artist so simple say “this is how I am feeling, this is my world, and I am ok” is an extremely refreshing change versus the huge, empty, grand statements you see from other artists.
Well, this is what it look like right before you fall Stumblin' around, you've been guessing your direction Next step, you can't see at all And I don't have a name, I don't have a name, no Who am I to blame? Who am I to blame though? And I cannot be changed, I cannot be changed, no Trust me, I've tried I just end up right at the start of the line Drawin' circles
Earl Sweartshirt recently went through a similar realization in his 2018 album Some Rap Songs. The music is sad, the lyrics are somber but there exists the notion throughout the album that while you may find this sad and feel sorry for the artists. They're fine. They're ok. They're expressing that this is their place and within they must find their peace.
Within the stories told in western culture we view happiness as this ultimate goal, that one needs to be happy to be a functioning person in society. Whereas in reality there is no bar or objective definition of a functioning person, once one has passed the bar of waking up and eating the rest is up to how they decide.
Living is the ups, and the downs, and the occasional crashes. the goal should be to make sure the highs are not too high and that the lows are not too low and navigating through the waves. Mac saw this, and the saddest part of listening to this album is knowing he is not here to see everyone else understand his message.
Circles is happy, sad, and extremely real. Circles is an album made by a person just trying to navigate depression and anxiety and find a piece of solace.
I hope you found yours Mac.