Death Race for Love

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Death Race for Love
Juice Wrld - Death Race for Love.png
Studio album by
ReleasedMarch 8, 2019 (2019-03-08)
Recorded2018–2019[1]
Genre
Length72:04
Label
Producer
Juice Wrld chronology
Wrld on Drugs
(2018)
Death Race for Love
(2019)
Legends Never Die
(2020)
Singles from Death Race for Love
  1. "Robbery"
    Released: February 13, 2019
  2. "Hear Me Calling"
    Released: March 1, 2019

Death Race for Love is the second studio album by American rapper Juice Wrld and the last to be released during his lifetime. It was released on March 8, 2019, by Grade A Productions and Interscope Records. It follows his debut studio album, Goodbye & Good Riddance (2018), and his collaborative mixtape with Future, Wrld on Drugs (2018). The album's artwork and title are inspired by the Twisted Metal series of video games for the original PlayStation console. The album features guest appearances from Brent Faiyaz, Clever, and Young Thug.

Death Race for Love includes the Nick Mira-produced lead single, "Robbery", which was released on February 13, and the Purps-produced "Hear Me Calling", which was released on March 1. The album received generally favorable reviews from critics and debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 with sales of 165,000 album-equivalent units. It is Juice Wrld's first US number-one album and was certified double platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).

Promotion[edit]

On February 7, 2019, Juice Wrld announced the album on Twitter, writing: "I'm losing my mind and loving every minute of it... Just in time for the drop of the album... MARCH 8th..."[3] On February 20, Wrld revealed that he would be headlining a North America concert tour in support of the album with fellow rapper Ski Mask the Slump God.[4] On March 4, he revealed the official tracklist for the album.[5] Wrld appeared on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon to perform "Hear Me Calling" on April 8.[6]

Singles[edit]

The album's lead single, "Robbery", was released on February 13. The song was produced by Nick Mira and peaked at number 27 on the Billboard Hot 100.[7][8][9] The album's second single, "Hear Me Calling", was released on March 1. The song was produced by Purps and peaked at number 38 on the Hot 100 following the album's release.[10][9]

Artwork and title[edit]

The album's artwork and title are inspired by the Twisted Metal series of video games for the original PlayStation console.[11]

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
SourceRating
AnyDecentMusic?5.4/10[12]
Metacritic61/100[13]
Review scores
SourceRating
AllMusic2.5/5 stars[14]
ConsequenceC[15]
The Guardian3/5 stars[16]
HipHopDX3.9/5[17]
HotNewHipHop69%[18]
NME4/5 stars[19]
Pitchfork6.8/10[20]
PopMatters4/10[21]
RapReviews6.5/10[22]
Rolling Stone3.5/5 stars[23]

Death Race for Love was met with generally favorable reviews. At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from professional publications, the album received an average score of 61, based on 11 reviews.[13] Aggregator AnyDecentMusic? gave it 5.4 out of 10, based on their assessment of the critical consensus.[12]

Thomas Hobbs of NME gave a positive review, stating "Juice Wrld is far less indulgent than XXX[Tentacion], not getting lost in the idea that he's a messianic creative. This will be the moment that solidifies his status as one of rap's most exciting new stars".[19] Scott Glaysher of HipHopDX said, "Genre-blending albums (no matter how commonplace they might be these days) are not easy to pull off and for that, Juice Wrld should be given credit. From the seemingly sincere lyrics to the equally candid delivery, Juice truly goes with his gut in whichever way (rap, sing, hum, sob)".[17] Danny Schwartz of Rolling Stone saying "Death Race succeeded in its most fundamental mission, which was to prove that "Lucid Dreams" was not a fluke. Songs like "Fast", "Ring, Ring", "Hear Me Calling" strike a dynamic balance of raw charisma and profound anxiety. ... While his melodrama tends to grow old over the course of a 22-track, 72-minute album, it is captivating in small doses".[23] Pitchfork's Alphonse Pierre wrote, "Fifty percent of the lyrics are bad ("Back on my bullshit, devil emoji") and the other 50 percent are also bad, but then they get stuck in your head and ultimately turn good ("Tell me your darkest secret shit you wouldn't even tell Jesus"). ... Death Race For Love feels like the real Juice Wrld, wearing his influences and heart on his sleeve, putting his ups and downs into the music in real time".[20]

In a mixed review, The Guardian's Kate Hutchinson stated: "It's slim on features (only Young Thug, Clever and Brent Faiyaz) but big on misanthropic head-nodders that put Juice's Fall Out Boy-style whine or raspy flow to the fore: he is more versatile than his peers and also more gifted. ... But ultimately, the suicide references of songs such as Empty and casual misogyny in the tauntingly violent Syphilis leave an uncomfortable taste."[16] PopMatters critic Mike Schiller said, "The ratio of bangers to duds, however, is not great, and Death Race for Love feels an awful lot like an unabridged teenage diary; while the occasional clever turn of phrase and moment of profundity is sure to bubble up, most of it is simple self-indulgence, an onslaught of pure emotion whose sincerity is never in question, but all of which starts to blur together after a mere few pages or songs".[21] Fred Thomas was also critical of the album in the review for AllMusic, stating "There's no shortage of highlights, but the lack of editing or focus means every song goes on a little too long and leads to another one that struggles to connect stylistically or emotionally".[14]

Rankings[edit]

Year-end lists for Death Race for Love
Publication List Rank Ref.
GQ (Russia) Best Music Albums of 2019 N/A
NME The 50 Best Albums of 2019
49
Rolling Stone 50 Best Albums of 2019
40
Uproxx The Best Albums of 2019
50

Industry awards[edit]

Awards and nominations for Death Race for Love
Year Award Category Result Ref.
2020 Billboard Music Awards Top Rap Album Nominated [28]
iHeart Radio Music Awards Hip-Hop Album of the Year Won [29]

Commercial performance[edit]

Death Race for Love debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 with 165,000 album-equivalent units, of which 43,000 were pure album sales in its first week. It is Juice Wrld's first US number-one album.[30] In its second week, the album remained at number one on the chart, moving an additional 74,000 equivalent units.[31] In its third week, the album dropped to number three on the chart, moving another 54,000 units.[32] In its fourth week, the album dropped to number five on the chart, moving 44,000 units.[33] As of May 2019, the album has earned 515,000 album-equivalent units and 53,000 copies in the United States.[34] On October 29, 2021, the album was certified double platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) for combined sales and album-equivalent units of over two million units.[35]

Track listing[edit]

Death Race for Love track listing
No.TitleWriter(s)Producer(s)Length
1."Empty"Nick Mira4:08
2."Maze"Boi-1da2:24
3."HeMotions"Hit-Boy3:07
4."Demonz (Interlude)" (featuring Brent Faiyaz)
1:35
5."Fast"3:28
6."Hear Me Calling"
Purps3:09
7."Big"
  • Higgins
  • Hollis
Hit-Boy3:44
8."Robbery"
  • Higgins
  • Mira
Mira4:00
9."Flaws and Sins"
  • Higgins
  • Mira
Mira3:38
10."Feeling"
  • Higgins
  • Mira
Mira3:21
11."Syphilis"
2:11
12."Who Shot Cupid?"
  • Higgins
  • Caserta
  • Dickinson
Purps3:34
13."Ring Ring" (with Rvssian featuring Clever)
Rvssian2:51
14."Desire"
  • Higgins
  • Caserta
  • Dickinson
Purps3:09
15."Out My Way"
  • Higgins
  • Hollis
Hit-Boy2:36
16."The Bees Knees"
5:25
17."On God" (featuring Young Thug)
4:10
18."10 Feet"
  • Higgins
  • Camden Bench
  • Arin Ray
  • Bench
  • Ray
3:32
19."Won't Let Go"
Purps3:20
20."She's the One"
  • Higgins
  • Hollis
Hit-Boy3:08
21."Rider"
  • Higgins
  • Brandon Mandolph
Power3:12
22."Make Believe"
  • Boi-1da
  • Brown
  • Jahaan Sweet
  • Tone
2:22
Total length:72:04

Personnel[edit]

Credits adapted from iTunes and Tidal.[36][37]

  • Max Lord – recording (tracks 1–22)
  • Jaycen Joshua – mixing (track 1–4, 6–22)
  • Manny Marroquin – mixing (track 5)
  • Lil Bibby – mixing (track 8)
  • Jacob Richards – mixing assistant (track 6)
  • Rashawn McLean – mixing assistant (track 6)
  • Mike Seaberg – mixing assistant (track 6)
  • Colin Leonard – mastering (tracks 1–22)

Charts[edit]

Certifications[edit]

Certifications for Death Race for Love
Region Certification Certified units/sales
Australia (ARIA)[81] Gold 35,000double-dagger
Denmark (IFPI Danmark)[82] Platinum 20,000double-dagger
New Zealand (RMNZ)[83] Gold 7,500double-dagger
United Kingdom (BPI)[84] Gold 100,000double-dagger
United States (RIAA)[35] 2× Platinum 2,000,000double-dagger

double-dagger Sales+streaming figures based on certification alone.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

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