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Pi’erre Bourne: The Life of Pi’erre 5 review – digital overload

·1-min read

Pi’erre Bourne is the super-producer behind some of the biggest rap tracks of the past decade, including Playboi Carti’s Magnolia and 6ix9ine’s Gummo. The Life of Pi’erre 5 is Bourne’s latest attempt to resurface as something greater than other people’s beatmaker, as an artist who can rival his melody-rapping peers such as Trippie Redd and Travis Scott.

His second studio album is saturated with his idiosyncratic earworm tricks: mid-tempo wavy beats, inebriated syncopated synths and gloomy piano arrangements. Both Biology 101 and Retroville are buoyant tracks that vibrate with instrumentals reminiscent of 90s video games. The gravity-free Hulu, a song about god, the galaxy, girls and his grandma, features breathy ad-libs and the velvetiness of ethereal cloud rap.

But the repetitive drone of his robotic vocals and disjointed storytelling can make the project feel laborious. Emotion and narrative feel absent in songs heavy with his lethargic, digitised flow, such as in Amen and 40 Clip. Occasionally, underneath the auto-tune is a warmth that doesn’t feel computer-generated. “Like my PlayStation, girl, let me console you. I know it’s hard to talk sometimes when you want to,” he croons boyishly on 4U.

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