Diplo is one of the biggest names in electronic music, and he's definitely shown in the past that he's worthy of his status. Just because he's popular doesn't mean everything he touches turns to gold, however. Diplo's California EP is all show, with misguided features and too much dissonance to make a lasting mark.
All of the features on California are rappers, and most of them seem to take the collaboration for granted. Desiigner makes an appearance (after pretty much disappearing off the face of the planet) in 'Suicidal,' a song that already has to play it safe given it's title. It certainly plays it safe - too safe. It legitimately feels like the entire song is just hook, with nothing but that to keep it interesting (which it loses pretty quickly). Desiigner's voice feels a bit too processed and it just doesn't work out too well. Trippie Redd doesn't seem to understand the concept of a smooth song in 'Wish,' his vocals scratchy and a bit too scathing atop the gentle, silky instrumental.
There are, thankfully, places where everything comes together. Lil Xan nails it on 'Color Blind,' his lackadaisical delivery working wonderfully over the atmospheric and bubbly instrumental. It's surprising at this point of the EP that things really work and click together. Opening track 'Worry No More' sees Lil Yachty actually sounding alright, and not like he's screwing around with random buttons like he did throughout Lil Boat 2. D.R.A.M. fits great in the fun atmosphere of 'Look Back' and feels right in place with the funky vibes. The closing track, a remix 'Get It Right' featuring MØ and GoldLink is inoffensive and is a nice, safe, and easy way to take the EP out.
Diplo's California EP is all show, playing things very safe and not taking proper advantage of its features. There's a lot of dissonance and it's not really consistent enough to stay interesting through its length. It's all bark and no bite.
Favorite Track: Color Blind
Least Favorite Tracks: Wish, Suicidal
Rating: 65 / 100
Stream or buy California on Apple Music, and follow our 2018 Playlist on Spotify: