YNW Melly’s “Murder On My Mind” Song Review

Hello, I’m MusiCommentator, and for today’s review, we’re going to be talking about an accused murderer…hurray…

If you haven’t been keeping up with hip-hop news recently, then you might not know about YNW Melly.  Melly is an artist who blew up with this song we will be talking about, “Murder On My Mind”.  This track has gotten him a lot of recognition, and it even got him a Kanye West feature on his newest album, but his career came to a halt when he was accused of killing two of his friends.  Now, I’m going to be honest with you, I really haven’t done much research on this story because it hasn’t interested me too much.  Also, I think I’ve just become so desensitized to rappers committing crimes nowadays that this story just feels like it fits in with the rest of them.  Plus, I can already tell you he did it.  Where’s my proof?  Just look at his mugshot:

Image result for ynw melly mugshot 2019

That, my friends, is not the face of an innocent man.

Anyways, I’m not here to tell you what did or didn’t happen or who is right and wrong.  I’m just here to talk about the music, specifically “Murder On My Mind“, and it’s been confirmed that the current murder story has nothing to do with this song, so I don’t have to care whether he killed his two friends (even though I feel bad for the families of the deceased).  But, let’s just look into these lyrics, because that is what matters right now.

I ain’t get to roll no weed, I ain’t get to roll no Swishers
I was locked up on Christmas, ain’t get to see my n*ggas
Ain’t get to hug my mama, couldn’t even give her no kisses
Can’t even post on my Instagram ’cause these p*ssy n*ggas be snitching

So Melly sets the scene at the beginning of the song by starting off in a jail cell and listing some of things he can’t do being in prison.  These are some things that we really don’t think about when someone is in prison, like how they miss out on holidays from a crime they might have been forced to do because of their environment or because it was a fake charge.  Either way, Melly does a good job at making the audience sympathize with his plight.

And all I smoke is that loud, don’t pass me no midget
And I’ma smoke all of my pain away ’cause that’s the only thing that gon’ heal it

If you’re already in jail, Melly, it might not be a good idea to smoke illegal drugs.

I wake up in the morning, I got murder on my mind
AK-47’s, MAC-11, Glocks, and nines
And all these p*ssy n*ggas hating, tryna knock me off my grind
But I can’t let ’em do it, I got murder on my mind

This is the song’s hook, and it’s a pretty stellar hook!  Not only is it catchy, but it encapsulates the attitudes and themes of the song perfectly.  It shows how ingrained murder is in the mind of an average inner city kid or gang-banger because it’s their only way of survival, which is pretty ironic when you think of how murder is the only way someone can survive.

Yellow tape around his body, it’s a f*cking homicide
His face is on a T-shirt and his family traumatized

The second verse starts off by addressing what usually happens when someone is unjustly killed in an inner city setting (one much like Melly grew up in).  The T-shirt shows how widespread the story becomes, and he brings in the emotions of the family to humanize the victim, which makes you feel even sadder when hearing the story later on in the verse.

I didn’t even mean to shoot him, he just caught me by surprise
I reloaded my pistol, cocked it back, and shot him twice

If he caught you by surprise, then how come you have enough time to load, cock, and shoot your gun twice?  I feel like your logic would have come in before you shot.

His body dropped down to the floor and he got teardrops in his eyes
He grabbed me by my hands and said he was afraid to die
I told him it’s too late, my friend, it’s time to say goodbye
And he died inside my arms, blood all on my shirt

This is probably the saddest part of the song, as Melly does a good job portraying the sad emotions of the story.  I think this also helps add another meaning to the hook.  Before, when he said “murder on my mind”, the assumption was that he was thinking about wanting to murder someone, but in this context, we see he has murder on his mind for a different reason, a much sadder reason: he already killed someone and now has to pay the price for it.  He doesn’t have a future murder he might have to commit on his mind, he already committed the murder.  Maybe I’m just overthinking it, but that’s how I saw it.

And to think, in a song like this, he hasn’t went off topic one time.  That’s usually prevalent in songs like this, but Melly is doing a good job at that, I guess.

Bite like tarantula, b*tch, I’m an animal
Melly’s a savage, no he not no amateur
Bad b*tch named Angela, f*cked her on camera
B*tch I’m a murderer

No, you’re just going to go off topic now?  After that intriguing and mournful story about accidentally killing your friend.  Okay, I least now I know how good you are at sex.  That’s what really mattered in this song, right?

I might just kill the boy, don’t wanna kill the boy
Bake him up, say he want beef, we gon’ grill the boy

At least this brings us back on track.  Melly addresses here how the lifestyle he is forced to live forces him to kill people he doesn’t even want to, which fits in well with the prior themes of the song.

Overall, this is an impressive song.  Most of these trap-Soundcloud type songs don’t go this deep into political/social themes like this one does, so I respect this track for doing that.  The way Melly tells his stories in this is quite captivating.  I mean, I’ve heard much more introspective and intriguing storytelling tracks from rappers, but none in a song like this.  Melly’s voice also does a good job at reflecting this sadness, as does the melancholy trap beat.  For that, I give this song a 4.5 out of 5.  Do you agree?

Thank you for reading my “Murder On My Mind” song review.  If you liked this review, make sure to follow my website, Twitter, and Instagram, like this post, and be sure to check in to read my future reviews.  Also, if you have something you want to see me review, tell me in the comments.  Until then, keep on listening to good music! I know I will.

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