‘Circles’ is Mac Miller’s sixth and final studio album and is really an album all generations can indulge in.
His first posthumous album since his passing in 2018, as summed up quite fittingly by Pitchfork, ‘Circles’ is a companion piece to his previous work, ‘Swimming’ that gives his years of work some closure.
In essence, this album is indeed the quintessential culmination of a career he spent improving.
In case you weren’t already familiar, ‘Swimming’ was an album that articulated his life struggles and strong desire to move beyond his complications towards growth and healing.
The two albums were indeed intended to be combined with the intention to convey, ‘Swimming in Circles’.
Since February 2019, it was reported that Miller had plans of releasing this album before his unfortunate passing. It wasn’t until January 2020 when Mac’s Instagram posted the album’s cover art with hints of the album dropping later that month.
The post featured a heartfelt caption written by his family detailing how much this album meant to him.
“We simply know that it was important to Malcolm for the world to hear it.”
American singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, Jon Brion was also heavily involved with Mac in crafting this album.
After Mac’s passing, Brion was whole-heartedly committed to continuing the project to ensure it was completely polished and ready for his dedicated fans.
Brion told Apple Music’s, Zane Lowe that the album came together through the support of Mac’s family and conversations the two shared before Miller’s death in September 2018.
Here are my top 3 tracks you need to listen to from ‘Circles’.
‘Blue World’ features an experimental sample flip accompanied by some pitched vocals as produced by Guy Lawrence, better known as the other half of Disclosure. The song details the complications in Mac’s life and reflecting on all the that has been, making subtle references to his former girlfriend, Ariana Grande and even Biggie Smalls.
‘Good News’ was his first official release since his passing in 2018. Here, Miller articulates how he is feeling no reprieve from the negative feelings invading his life and the pressure to maintain ‘happy’ around those he cares about. However, he also feels like he has to suppress his honest negative feelings circling his mind, further indicating his mental health struggles. Contrastingly, the accompanying music video features some positive parts of the world Miller wants to discover on the track.
‘Woods’ details a broken relationship that is beyond fixing. The phrase, “out of the woods” implies that the worst of something is over and the best is yet to come. Additionally, ‘the woods’ can be interpreted as being the worst of the situation that he is currently stuck in.
What are you waiting for?!
Go give ‘Circles’ a full listen HERE.