Alex Da Kid ft. X Ambassadors, Elle King & Wiz Khalifa ‘Not Easy’ Song Review

This is another stinker; two stinkers in a row fancy that! Now this mouthful of a track is probably the most generic track of the year; it is beat for beat garbage. Although there are some elements I did enjoy, there are others that are almost laughably bad… Guessing by the feature list I’m sure you can already guess what element is the worst… But anyways I suppose I better soldier on with this review!

Production wise the track is a little boring. There are no sweet transitions put in and the effects are kept at a minimum; there is no spice. The vocals sound natural and hearty, I like that, but the instrumentation possesses no life whatsoever. The acoustic guitar sounds crisp sure, but the drum beat is nearly distorted from the crushed drum mastering; it sounds pretty awful actually. It had me falling asleep with the lack of dynamic variation from section to section; it just felt so bland!

Musicality wise the song is a dud. X Ambassadors have got into the habit of making the same track over and over; here nothing changes. The song is indie folk at it’s worst state; every single second is predictable and safe. The acoustic progression is so unoriginal it hurts and the finger picking doesn’t shake that up at all; if you want to hear finger picking that does shake things up then listen to the ‘MAGIC!’ song that was released last month. Each note is by the book and there isn’t a single section that leaps out to me in a good way. The backing beat actually became so predictable that I must of broken the eye rolling speed record. But let’s talk about the elephant in the room here… What the actual crap is Wiz Khalifa doing on this track…? I realise he’s a likeable guy and naturally funny, but this has to be the most ill fitting rap feature of the year; it even beats out Kendrick Lamar’s feature on the recent Maroon 5 track. His little sequence of ‘inspirational’ dialogue at the end is horrendously bad; I wrote poems more endearing than this ten years ago (that would make me 9 years old by the way). ‘I gotta do, what I gotta do, to get where I’m going’…. What… Did no-one else say to him in the studio, ‘Um is that it?’ Obviously not.

The vocal performances are all safe and by the numbers; no one really catches my eye. I did like the harmonies but they were underdeveloped; they could of been the driving force of the track with this many features, but instead they were just tacked on. If you have so many singers on a track, then do some gang vocals or something, don’t just give everyone a verse otherwise we are hearing the same thing three times in different voices; that’s dull. But yeah, Wiz Khalifa is still the worst. His delivery is lazy and it just didn’t suit the Southern style of the song; flashbacks of Nelly here *shivers*.

So all in all, the track actually sucks. No matter how much you gloss it up, it’s still forgettable, there isn’t a single catchy sequence and there is so much talent wasted in it’s run time. It follows all the tropes of a Billboard folk pop track and it does nothing new in the genre whatsoever; it takes what has already been done, and does it worse. This track angers me more than it should because it’s an obvious commercial ploy… Take a couple big names, write and record a backing track in a week, make the lyrics lack any substance or personality so that they are accessible and understandable to everyone and bam release it on Vevo. Job done.

3/10 – The worst track I’ve listened to today out of 25.

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