Lil Pump’s first official album following an eponymous mixtape packs more of the lurid lifestyle and soundcloud mixings of the kid behind “Gucci Gang”. Still only 18, Gazzy Garcia follows a distinct recipe: spin a mumble rap beat, sprinkle in salacious one-liners, repeat for 16 songs. From dissing teachers to constantly bringing up past fellatio, he acts as that kooky cousin who threw his life away and now works a dead-end job. Only the teen junkie is a filthy rich, narcissistic superstar loving nothing more than to rub his hundreds in your face (except perhaps Xanax). On the ferociously repetitive Harverd Dropout, raunch runs amok. Not a single track reaches its conclusion before Pump has nailed a “b*tch” or brought up his fancy cars and watches, a tactic that runs its course long before the beats start to get catchy.
Pump duos with Kanye West for “I Love It”, a pairing that seems unusual until the locker room talk session that ensues. The former declares he’s had sex with someone in London, then nailed her cousin or sister (claiming he isn’t sure which). Then Kanye dips in with a verse on par with his eye-rolling “bleached asshole” tale from “Father Stretch My Hands, Pt. 1”. He spits “I’m a sick f*ck, I like a quick f*ck” 5 times over and not much more in a thankfully brief appearance. What’s even sadder is witnessing one of the the better beats get wasted with trashy lyrics- an occurrence that haunts the majority of the playlist.
The LP’s saving grace is the production. Looking past Pump’s impudent bars, more than a few mixes get the job done in their Soundcloud simplicity. The only time Pump went behind the boards was for the hollow “Esskeetit”. Otherwise, “Racks on Racks” and Smokepurpp’s “ION” don’t have terrible beats, even if the stories don’t reach further than the realm of promiscuous sex and coke-snorting. The bouncy rhythm of “Be Like Me” and Lil Wayne’s feature make it a highlight, but then again, most rappers would look like Tupac standing next to Garcia.
Even with a few catchy trap sounds, there are verses of Harverd Dropout that are irritating to listen to. “Vroom Vroom Vroom” is a horrendous song full of the rapper mimicking car noises on the mic. “Butterfly Doors” contains a terrible line about how all the drugs he does cause his eyes to sag like an asian. “Smokin’ on dope/They call me Yao **** ’cause my eyes real low” references Chinese basketball legend Yao Ming. Originally, Ming’s full name was used, but after unsurprising backlash, Pump only says “Yao” and bleeps out the last name. It’s an incredibly careless edit that doesn’t really change how dumb and offensive the line is, but that’s the teen’s repertoire as a lyricist in a nutshell.
Pump continually sets up many steamy scenarios, but never pays them off with a witty double entendre. Instead, what remains is a bland line only said for the sake of him noting his licentiousness. The LP is a constant battle between his dull writing and a production team that nets him some solid basses from time to time. The latter undeniably saved this project from being a complete disaster to the likes of other lowbrow rappers like Lil Xan or 6ix9ine, but it’s not enough to redeem Harverd Dropout.
SCAD Radio gives it a 6/10.