Cardboard Castles

Steel Wool Media

Watsky, a San Francisco rapper who has built a fan-base via YouTube, released his second album Cardboard Castles in March 2013 through Steel Wool Media. He shows that there is much more to him as an artist than his ability to rap outrageously fast, which is what got him internet-famous. That’s not to say that we don’t get to enjoy his fast rapping on Cardboard Castles. “Ugly Faces” and “Strong as an Oak” particularly showcase this talent. Cardboard Castles takes on all sorts of themes. “Fireworks” and the title track “Cardboard Castles” have a personal, autobiographical element to them. Some songs get emotional like “Dedicated to Christina Li,” about an old classmate who passed away, and “Tiny Glowing Screens Part 1,” about technology taking over the world. Still, the album is a lot of fun too. “Kill a Hipster” and “Ugly Faces” are so bizarre that you’ll have to play them again and again. Some spoken word tracks are also sprinkled in, including his introspective poem “Tiny Glowing Screens Part 2,” and a few spontaneous (and hilarious) conversations with a little kid. If nothing else, Cardboard Castles is an incredibly unique take on the rap genre.

—Chelsea Mulligan

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