In a controversial but long-awaited comeback, Ameer Vann has returned with EP EMMANUEL to tell an emotional story of self-loathing, pain, and regret. After being kicked out of popular boyband BROCKHAMPTON due to multiple negative allegations, many have wondered when, and if, Ameer Vann would be seen in the music scene again. While there are many opinions surrounding Vann’s conduct, this review will be focused on his music, and how he has chosen to tell his story through this new six-song release.
Opening with “Emmanuel” Vann references his childhood and a more recent struggle with suicidal thoughts, all over a menacing bassline. This song is not an easy listen, and it sets a harrowing theme that is seen through the rest of the EP. The next track, “Pop Trunk” may be my least favorite, as it is just a single-toned rap on a looping beat that feels a little out of place in the EP. Ironically, this song sounds similar to his style in many BROCKHAMPTON songs.
Similarly to others, as apparent by the number of listens on Spotify, “Glock 19” is my favorite song of this EP. Vann puts a lot of emotion into this track, and it is seemingly the track with the highest production quality as well. “Glock 19” has lyrics and rhymes that are addicting, and if any song is stuck in your head from this EP, it will likely be this one.
The three last tracks of this EP are symbolic of Vann’s downfall. In “Los Angeles”, he tells the story about how he believes moving from Texas to pursue music was the beginning of the end for him. In the track, he details that he believes he truly lost himself after moving to California. While in “Los Angeles” there is a sense of regret, the next track “Sunday Night” embodies spite and anger. “Sunday Night” seems as though it is targeted towards those who did not take his side or defend him when he became controversial. Vann raps that he expected to have those close to him on his side during the bad times, but he did not have that experience. The last track “Plastic” is presented as if it is a self-reflection from Vann. Perhaps he is not truly accepting what happened to him, but the entire experience has made him more self-aware.
I have no new opinions on Vann’s actions, but I will say that this EP was wonderfully made. Vann’s vulnerability and clear talent for music makes this a difficult but appreciable listen. More than anything there is a lot of pain in these songs, and it is unclear if producing this EP provided relief for any of it.
Favorite Songs: Glock 19 = Sunday Night = Emmanuel