DOJA CAT – HOT PINK REVIEW

I have to start this one out by saying that I am really glad that Doja Cat is finally getting the respect she deserves in 2019 for being a dope and innovative hip hop artist. I have been into Doja Cat her EP Purrr! went sort of viral in the underground hip hop community in 2015, with her song ‘So High’ being one of the best, slept on tracks of that year. I had hoped that this was a sign of great things to come, but due to problems with record labels and whatnot, the hype around Doja Cat, unfortunately, started to fade. This all changed when she went about as viral as possible with her music video for her “meme song” called ‘Moo!’ Doja Cat actually made this track for fun on Instagram Live and ended up making a hilarious video for it featuring herself in a sexy cow costume. This video did end up getting the public eye to start noticing Doja Cat again, but following up a lucky viral “meme song” can be hard for everyone because of the weird expectations that can be put on them. Fortunately, Doja Cat is a star, and she used this virality super well, connecting with some of the best rising producers and rappers in the game for her new music. Earlier this year, she dropped the track ‘Tia Tamera,’ which features Rico Nasty and is easily one of the most underrated bangers of the year. I mean, who wouldn’t love a loud and grimey and super bass-heavy song about big titties? ‘Tia Tamera’ is not actually on Hot Pink, though(it ended up being put on a deluxe version of her debut album as a bonus track); this honestly may not be a bad thing because it probably would not have meshed with the themes and style of the album that well anyway. Hot Pink is a cleaner, more mature, and better-produced version of the dope music she has been putting out for so long. I feel like all fans of Doja Cat, whether you like her older stuff or her newer music, can find something that they love on this album. Doja Cat has always been excellent at seeing what the fans want and trying to make art with that in mind, and Hot Pink is a great example of that. It is a cool hodgepodge of all the hip hop sounds that Doja Cat loves, packaged in a way that is super accessible and fluid overall.

I wanna touch on you. You see me in my room. Wish you were here right now, all of the things Id do. I want to get freaky on camera. I love it when we get freak on camera…

If you listened to Doja Cat’s album Amala(which is also her first name, how pretty, right?), which actually came out right before she went viral in 2018, I imagine that you will be into the song ‘Cyber Sex.’ It has a similar pop trap feel to most of the music from that record, and the theme of the track would fit Amala just and much as it fits Hot Pink. My favorite thing about ‘Cyber Sex’ is the sweet and pretty melody, which has a complete island vibe to it and sounds like it was made on some sort of Xylophone synthesizer. The chorus of this song, which is written above, is so catchy and infectious. Doja Cat is a master at writing these simple, sticky hooks that are sung in a way that will imprint them into your head, and ‘Cyber Sex’ is an excellent demonstration of that skill. After that dope introductory track, we launch into one of the best multi-song stretches of any album to come out this year. The next 6 songs are all absolutely dope bangers, and they are all super unique from each other in cool ways. ‘Won’t Bite,’ which features Smino, is a personal favorite for me; in fact, this track will definitely be near the top of my end of the year list of favorite tracks(it probably will not be the only Doja Cat song up there, though haha). This song has a modern punk-reggae vibe that makes me think Amala has to be a big fan of Sublime; I mean if you listen to and think about her flow and the way this song sounds, how can it not remind you of Bradley Noel? On this track, Doja Cat follows a theme that is pretty common on this record: Doja Cat is a generally nice and sweet person that does not want drama, but if you fuck her over or mess with her emotions she will show you that she has claws and fuck you up. She gives the memo multiple times on this record that she is not the one to be fucked with. Smino’s Chance the Rapper-style gospel sing-rap matches up so well with Doja Cat’s singing voice. These two need to make more music together in the near future because their sounds mesh super well. Next, we get the song ‘Rules,’ which is one of the singles that garnered a lot of viral attention due to its awesome music video. Doja Cat serves up so many dope looks in this video, and if you have not seen it I highly recommend it. I am not going to say a ton about this song because I just talked about it last week in my “New(ish) songs)” article, and I would love for ya’ll to go read what I had to say about it there. I will say that Doja Cat totally excelled in her country trap moment with ‘Rules,’ and it is just one of so many examples of her diversity as an artist. ‘Bottom Bitch’ is another favorite of mine from this record, as Doja Cat let her emo side out on this one with this punk-trap banger and it is awesome. ‘Bottom Bitch’ featured a slowed down and chopped sample of the guitar riff from Blink 182’s ‘Adam’s Song,’ so if you were wondering why it sounds so damn familiar, I am sure that is why. The best thing about this song, in my opinion, is when Amala lets loose in the second version and starts to sing-rap in an eccentric way that almost sounds like an auto-tuned version of hardcore punk; the second verse of ‘Bottom Bitch’ is super cool and different and could have only been made by Doja Cat because there are no other artists that sound like this.

Didn’t have to know me, keeping me in the moment; I get you hot and moaning, why don’t you say so? Didn’t even notice, no punches there to roll with. You got to keep me focused, you want it, say so…

I swear to God this is one of those albums where I want to say every song is my favorite. There are so many cool sounds on this album that are so different from each other, even though the album stays on topic the whole time. ‘Say So’ is stylistically very far from ‘Bottom Bitch,’ but this does not mess with the flow of the album at all. ‘Say So’ has a 90s cute late 90s dance R&B vibe that is bound to get anyone dancing immediately. It has that Miami-style Hi-NRG electronic funk vibe that I really love, and Doja Cat excels at making the song sound extra cute and sweet. This song is also a major Nicki Minaj moment for Doja as well; the way she is able to transition from singing to hard-ass rapping between verses on a song like this is so similar to Nicki. Based on the lyrics and overall vibe of the song, I think that ‘Say So’ would be a super excellent end of the night club track when you’re on that dance floor looking for someone to take you home. Following the sweetness of that last track, we get another cute 90s style R&B ballad, which is called ‘Like That’ and features Gucci Mane. ‘Like That’ has a different sort of 90s R&B vibe than the last song, tho; ‘Say So’ has a way more electronic funk vibe than ‘Like That,’ and it makes ‘Like That’ sound a bit more like traditional R&B than ‘Say So.’ The Gucci Mane feature on this song is pretty awesome considering I do not know if I have ever even heard him on a song that is as pop as this one. It is a really cool stretch of his comfort zone, and as I have said in the past, I would love to hear Gucci Mane experiment with pop-rap beats more. This feature also seems perfectly placed on this album; just when it feels like the album may need a bit of a change of voice or a switch up, Gucci Mane comes in and makes sure there isn’t any monotony on this record. ‘Talk Dirty’ gives the album a bit more of a hip hop feeling again after that trip into funky R&B land. Like I keep alluding to, there is no way this album can get stale to anyone at any point because it switches up styles so much. The instrumental for this song is perfect for the way Doja Cat raps and sings; it features a very minimal and cute melody that consists of a few piano keys and Doja humming, and the beat is an old school clear 808 type of joint that is pretty low key. This chill and subdued instrumental forces the listener to listen to the way Doja is singing and rapping, which is awesome because she shows off all of what makes her an awesome singer and rapper on this song. ‘Addiction’ once again provides a total change in vibe from Amala. Although this track does bring the faster tempo back, stylistically this is probably the most different and least hip hop sounding song on the album. It almost has a bedroom pop or new wave vibe in a way; even though it has a faster beat than these kinds of songs usually exhibit, the downtempo and sort of underground house nature of the melody is only like what one would hear in 80s new wave music. One thing that makes ‘Addiction’ awesome is the fact that it shows off pretty much all of Doja Cat’s many abilities as a vocalist. On ‘Addiction,’ we here some of those nasty quick-fire rap flows that she has become known for, as well as some excellent singing in high and low pitches that show off her super wide range.

We have made it into the love-making portion of the album. The next few songs are so smooth and sensual that there probably aren’t too many other activities that you would partake in besides making babies while listening to these songs; let’s just say that it would probably be pretty awkward if you threw them on while cracking some cold ones with the boys. The first of these ultra-sexy tracks is ‘Streets.’ This track is so slow and silky that it literally sounds like it could be by Lloyd or Trey Songz. My favorite part of ‘Streets’ is when Doja goes into her rap breakdown at the end of the song. The way that she is able to perform this transition so effortlessly is really only comparable to Drake and Nicki Minaj, and it is pretty rad. The next track, ‘Shine,’ is a super glitzy and glamorous cloud trap song that sort of reminds me of Pnb Rock or YNW Melly. I guess that this one technically is not a baby-making song, but if you played it while you’re hunkered down with someone and trying to get it on I do not think it would kill the mood. Doja Cat’s knowledge of and ability to use auto-tune in cool and interesting ways is super prevalent and awesome in this song. Not only does she have the ability to literally sound like multiple different artists with her singing and rapping, but she can also sound like multiple different robots from the future with her use of auto-tune. After this, we get the other baby-making song that is as sexual and sensual as ‘Streets.’ On ‘Better Than Me,’ Doja Cat gives us all of the reasons that we should want to be with her, and honestly, she has me completely sold. This track is totally unique to her and I do not know of any other artists right now that could even make a song like this. The way she is able to switch voices on the spot, as well as alternate between singing and rapping on the spot, is unlike anyone else. Doja Cat can literally sound like four different artists in the same song, and that is really rad. The album closes out with the track ‘Juicy,’ which features Tyga. Due to the raunchy music video where Doja Cat shows off her voluptuous body in multiple fruit-themed outfits, ‘Juicy’ created another viral moment for her that had her trending all over social media. ‘Juicy’ is a super cute pop-trap cut that is all about Doja Cat showing off her body positivity; she knows that she is thicker than most women, and she flaunts it instead of being insecure and it is really awesome. I even dig Tyga’s verse on this one. (I do not know if I have teleported to a different world in the last year, because I have been liking more music with Tyga in it than ever before). ‘Juicy’ is super cute and shows off a lot of the elements that make Doja Cat different and great, and I think it was the perfect song to go viral for her to show off all of her abilities as an artist without it being too eccentric for the mainstream.

In the last couple of years, the world has watched Doja Cat evolve from a funny and out of pocket meme artist to a viral sex symbol and super diverse and interesting musical artist. The thing is, Doja Cat has been doing all of these things that make her great for years, and she is now honing all of these skills in a way that is unlike everyone else. Doja Cat has the raunchy, sexual, and I don’t give a fuck attitude that Lil Kim has, the ability to rap and sing effortlessly and in an instant like Drake, and the ability to create interesting and eccentric characters in her music. Hot Pink is a very complete album that shows off the many abilities that Doja Cat has as an artist. This record is an assertion that not only Doja Cat is a rising star in the hip hop game that is her to say, but also that she is one of the more innovative and unique artists making pop-rap music right now.

8.05/10