Watching Movies with the Sound Off

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Watching Movies with the Sound Off Image
Metascore
73

Generally favorable reviews - based on 17 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.4

Generally favorable reviews- based on 86 Ratings

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  • Summary: The second release for the Pittsburgh rapper includes guest appearances from Ab-Soul, Action Bronson, Jay Electronica, Schoolboy Q, Earl Sweatshirt as well as production from Flying Lotus and Pharrell Williams.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 17
  2. Negative: 0 out of 17
  1. Jun 24, 2013
    80
    While Watching Movies with the Sound Off lacked that strong single to support the album’s release and the young Mac still has time to fully develop the direction in which he proceeds from at this point in time, the Most Dope spitter crafted a cinematic achievement that is definitely most dope.
  2. Jun 18, 2013
    80
    Mac Miller’s sophomore effort is a surprising and focused album from an artist fed up with his public perception. He does enough here to prove his point.
  3. Jun 19, 2013
    80
    Whatever adolescent deficiencies Mac Miller dealt with throughout his prodigious rise as Rostrum’s second brain child, Watching Movies With The Sound Off genuinely keeps him grounded for a calculated performance that will earn him the respect he’s craved since his Easy Mac days.
  4. Jun 18, 2013
    70
    There's no new "Trump," but the horn-spiked "Goosebumpz" brings a whole different ruckus and one of Miller's best punch lines.
  5. Jun 24, 2013
    70
    Watching Movies with the Sound Off is a quantum leap in artistry, but it’s not without faults; the album’s about three songs too long, and a couple of the tracks in the back end just plain run together.
  6. Jun 18, 2013
    65
    It may be hard to take Mac Miller seriously at times, but it's just as hard to dredge up any overwhelmingly negative feelings about Watching Movies save for two [the cover art and the deluxe edition feels like there's some filler material ].
  7. Jun 17, 2013
    40
    Here, his delivery and beats are pretty dull. More tedious still is the misogyny.

See all 17 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 28
  2. Negative: 3 out of 28
  1. Aug 19, 2013
    10
    "Who the is Mac Miller?". These are the words ushered by battle rapper Loaded Lux on WMWTSO. Over the past 2 years or so, many of his fans"Who the is Mac Miller?". These are the words ushered by battle rapper Loaded Lux on WMWTSO. Over the past 2 years or so, many of his fans and music listeners in general have asked the same question. The question is posed as a mainstream Hip-Hop diss veering towards 'You're not popular', however I interpreted it as 'Where are you going stylistically?'.

    Mac's second studio album shows us maturity, both in his music and as a person. Mac elevated himself in every regard on this project, and I would like to break down how.

    Production: This is probably the highlight of the album; the instrumentals, vocals and placement of the songs.

    Mac enlisted the help of some pretty powerful names, from Pharell, to Chuck English, SAP (the genius behind 'Donald Trump') and FlyLo. Just play the first 10 seconds of each song, and you will hear for yourself the variation. You have sentimental, deep feeling tracks such as 'REMember', 'Objects In The Mirror' & 'Someone Like You'. Fast paced, lively boom-bap sounds such as 'Gees', 'OK', 'Watching Movies', 'Goosebumpz' & 'S.D.S'. Colourful Piano Chords and Samples in 'Avian', 'I'm Not Real', 'Red Dot Music' & 'Matches' (BMSR Sample FTW). However, where the beats shine is when Mac decides to bring in introspective, slow sounds on the tracks 'The Star Room', 'I Am Who Am' & 'Aquarium'. Mac even produced about 1/4 of the album himself, under the name Larry Fisherman.

    These songs are great individually, however, for me an album is at its best when it links. Mac utilized this incredibly well, whether it be Earl telling him to "go" (which is precisely what he did on S.D.S), again Lux asking who he is (which he then outlines on 'Gees') or Mac going from discussing his view on certain quote-on-quote important social/political/economical issues ('Aquarium') to him detailing his idea of what euphoria is (Youforia, which is the vagina). Finally his voice sounds a lot cleaner compared to previous work, and the vocals provided by Niki Randa are enchanting. Mac uses pitch vocals on a few songs also, so you can see the Odd Future influence.

    Lyrics: I have loved Mac Miller since he started, but I even I can admit that his lyrics were never the greatest. Whether that be his lyricism, or what he is saying. On WMWTSO, Mac abolishes my thoughts. Mac decided to put it all on the line, and rap about many different topics, from his parents relationship, his own, his addiction to 'lean', celebrity culture, secret societies/conspiracies, his childhood, religion (a lot), money and its negative effects, even the human condition; (When 'em high roller homes in Vegas/Raid them with some home invasions/Contaminating the place with plague, we just saved the day. 'I Am Who Am').

    His skills at conveying his thoughts also have improved. Lines such as "Not into this conversation/I've been in my head for hours" (Not into/Nodding to), "Money in machines/those will make you change", "Jewish Buddhist consuming the views of Christianity", "You got a clue/what does a clue get? Nothing" & "Make a collage and look at it through a kaleidoscope".

    Flow: This has always been Mac's strong point, and it only gets better on this project. "Hyper than Williams' middle son since I was a little one moms had to put me on the Ritalin/ Made a swisher run crack the 40 then I lit a blunt/Told Chuck I had a couple raps so we kicked the drums." Mac varies his tempo based on what he is talking about, but always keeps it interesting. Tracks such as 'I Am Who Am', 'Watching Movies' and 'Gees' best showcase this.

    Features: Damn. Action Bronson, Schoolboy Q, Ab-Soul, Tyler, Earl, Jay Electronica? Mac certainly kept his ear to this best talent of the 'new-school'.

    All verses vary, from Bronson showcasing his already legendary rapping skills, Soul getting nostalgic about his childhood, Tyler hyping Mac up for a crazy song or Jay Electronica even rapping about female characters from actual movies.

    WMWTSO is no concept album, it is however, a piece of art that rivals any in hip-hop this year. I advise anyone to at least try 3 or 4 tracks. Remember, the dude is only 21, and has produced a future classic with some incredible replay value.
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  2. Jun 18, 2013
    10
    This album honestly grows on me more and more with each listening. Plenty of standout tracks, with Objects in the Mirror, Watching Movies andThis album honestly grows on me more and more with each listening. Plenty of standout tracks, with Objects in the Mirror, Watching Movies and a few others being personal favorites. Production by Mac, as Larry Fisherman, is very good and you can tell that he has evolved a lot in that aspect. As far as the features are concerned, they are all well matched with the more chilled out approach this album seems to take. To the reviewer who said that Mac's flow is boring and the same in every song clearly was not listening to the album carefully. I'm not gonna pretend that this album is full of hype beats and that Mac has a different flow on every song, but don't we always bash artists for not being unique?...this is certainly unique and Mac's own flow. If you want examples of quicker flows and beats that are less "boring" you can listen to S.D.S., Watching Movies or Goosebumpz. Expand
  3. Jul 29, 2013
    9
    Watching Movies With the Sound Off is a nearly flawless depiction of the intricate mind that is Mac Miller. The days of "frat rap" are over,Watching Movies With the Sound Off is a nearly flawless depiction of the intricate mind that is Mac Miller. The days of "frat rap" are over, as Cheesy Mac evolves into a mature artist. WMWTSO has a subdued, laid-back sound, and Miller executes this style with ease. Compassionate and honest rhymes literally pull you into the album, and Mac's story unfolds... One amazing song at a time. Expand
  4. Jun 22, 2013
    8
    this was a very interesting album because Mac Miller went away from his party roots and did a unique hip hop album His beats sound excellent,this was a very interesting album because Mac Miller went away from his party roots and did a unique hip hop album His beats sound excellent, his lyrics were good and this was a smart choice to do for mac Miller because he could have done another Blue Slide Park ,(which I enjoy also) but he went left and gave us a solid project Expand
  5. Aug 7, 2013
    7
    Well it's an enjoyable album. You don't usually get a white rapper as good as Eminem, but here's a more fun Eminem. Definitely a must buy. KeyWell it's an enjoyable album. You don't usually get a white rapper as good as Eminem, but here's a more fun Eminem. Definitely a must buy. Key songs include Bird Call and Gees. Expand
  6. Jun 18, 2013
    6
    Experimental album here from Mac Miller where he is seemingly trying to find his sound. Despite this learning process for him, the album was aExperimental album here from Mac Miller where he is seemingly trying to find his sound. Despite this learning process for him, the album was a lot more successful than his debut; Blue Slide Park. Mac has matured a ton since then and it shows here with his subject matter in some songs, which take a more serious tone than his usual party tracks. Despite that, there are some tracks such as "S.D.S.", "Avian", and "Bird Call", which are just duds. However, there's more good than bad and as such, I'd say this was a successful sophomore album for Mac and a step in the right direction. Expand
  7. Jun 23, 2013
    0
    Any idiot can rap about getting their sucked. Mac Miller stumbles around the entire album without saying anything even remotely interestingAny idiot can rap about getting their sucked. Mac Miller stumbles around the entire album without saying anything even remotely interesting or intriguing. Expand

See all 28 User Reviews