Album Review | Lt. Headtrip – Dreamery

This album was released on August 7th in 2020. I first became familiar with Lt. Headtrip when he was featured on ialive’s album from last year, I’ll Wait Forever. At least, I think that’s the first time I’d heard of him. I may be forgetting something. Anyway, I enjoyed his performance on that project, and he also ended up impressing me later on when he was featured prominently on Unsung’s latest album, Sup Bub. I feel like I probably had more background about this project that I could’ve shared when it originally came out, but I got to it very late, and now I honestly don’t even remember how much information I had about it in the first place. I’m going into this thing blind. Actually, I’m 99% sure Lt. Headtrip messaged me about it on Twitter, but I lost the conversation since the feds got my original account. Based on the little blurb on the Bandcamp page, it seems like this is a very focused concept album. It also seems like this is a sequel, so I’ll probably be pretty lost when it comes to the narrative. I don’t know though. We’ll see what happens. Every track is produced by C $ Burns, except where noted.


There aren’t any tracks that I don’t like on this album, so I’ll write about it in the proper order of the full track listing. The album begins with Catch That Ferry, and right off the bat I was pretty impressed with the production.

This is some smooth ass pimp shit. It sounds slick as hell. Lyrically, the song kinda reminds me of something that would’ve been on that Epic Beard Men album from 2019. I feel like this album in general has a very similar sense of humor to that album. It definitely gave me flashbacks to Shin Splints.

Pack every bag I can carry
Hop into the rental, gotta catch that ferry
I can make it just barely
Accounted for the weather, but traffic could get hairy
I'm island-bound, gotta get over the Wrong Island sound
I'm wilin' out, I've been stuck on 95 for a while now

The song is pretty short since it’s only one verse, but I think it’s a really great intro. There’s really not a single aspect of it that I don’t like. Even the music video is awesome. It’s very well done. I think the song is dope as hell. The following track is entitled Just Wait, and I think it’s even better. In fact, it’s one of my favorite tracks on the whole album. The production here is absolutely anthemic. I feel like this track would go crazy at live shows. It sounds like some shit that should be played at a stadium. It’s one of the hardest hitting beats I’ve heard in a while. I love Headtrip’s animated delivery over it too. The way he pronounces his words kinda reminds me of Aesop Rock. He really gave me everything I wanted with this song. His delivery is perfect.

"He finally pulled it off," they'll all agree in chorus
Pouring honest astonishment out, palms against their foreheads
With a small amount of avarice and retroactive encouragement
"You really shouldn't have," he'll say while he embellishes
"We never doubted him," they'll all believe in unison
Haters get a tunin' up or tossed into the loony bin
"I feel empowered," one'll say to his conducive friend
They'll not their heads and wring their hands like they were ruminating

His flow is fantastic, and as you can see the writing is great too. I can’t decide which aspect of the song I like the most between the anthemic production, the superb writing, the energetic flows and deliveries, as well as the scratches from DJ MoNiklz. I think it’s perfect. The song is dope af. It’s followed by Heard, which isn’t really one of my favorites on the album, but that’s not saying much because I still think it’s super dope. The production kinda reminds me of Jay-Z’s Heart of the City. On this track Headtrip is kinda rapping from the perspective of what sounds like a waiter or maybe a restaurant host.

Sorry not sorry, we only reserve parties of six or more
You can chill at the bar or wait on the porch or the lawn
You'll get a text when your group can be sat
Or hit up Sid and get your party basil cucumber smashed
See, this is a million dollar business that makes it's money in three months
The fish and chips are coming, no such thing as a free lunch
Unless you complain enough; okay, I just ate the cost
Lackluster service? Blame the boss

It’s pretty silly stuff. I found it very entertaining. I really liked that line about the steak.

Table from hell sayin' their steak isn't well
It's basically ash, whatever, you can save it for Yelp

It’s kind of a weird concept for a song, and I’m not really sure what the inspiration for it was. I like it a lot though. The hook isn’t really anything special to me, but the fun lyricism kept me entertained, and the beat is really dope. I fuck with it. Track 4 is entitled Dusty. Once again, I was pretty blown away by the production. I think this beat is fucking awesome. Funnily enough, this track actually reminded me of Pistol Dave from the aforementioned Epic Beard Men album. He’s rapping about a character named Dusty. Or maybe it was a real person who inspired the song. I don’t know.

Dusty had a sense of loyalty that I admired
He hooked up his friend with a boy who he desired
‘Cause they made a good fit and he thought they deserved it
Or maybe Dusty never really felt like he was worth it
See, he made a lot of dollars, but he couldn’t find his path
The water locked wanderer kinda felt trapped
In bed with his shoes on, laid out on his back
Like, “Quiet! Shh! I need to take a nap.”

The hook is pretty simplistic, but it serves its purpose well enough. As much as I enjoyed the first verse, the second verse is a lot crazier lyrically.

That big old heart of his didn’t wanna quit
It felt trapped, a bit like Dusty did
So it snapped some ribs back and ripped through the flesh
Dropped a fat sack of yip in his chest
Stitched him up, threw the kicks on fresh
And headed into town so it could paint the city red

I didn’t realize until this point on the album that each song is just a rap about dreamlike scenarios. It’s a pretty awesome concept to be honest. This story about Dusty’s heart jumping out and going to a club to buss some moves is dope as hell. I love the song. The next track is called Throw Your Phone in the Ocean. This is yet another highlight for me. The tone of the production definitely matches the setting depicted in the lyrical content. This one’s basically about being stranded on an island with shitty phone service.

If a cell phone tower on an island falls
Can’t nobody make the call
Did it ever really happen at all?

This song also has a theme of paranoia in regards to being spied on. That line about getting the chip beneath the skin to talk back was dope. I think there’s definitely some validity to the general sentiment of the song, which is that phones and social media cause a lot of the most negative emotions we feel.

We're happy with detachment for a moment
And everyone's relaxed enough to notice
The enchantment of our understated cumulative wholeness
A friend without a profile, a web without a modem
But then the tower pulls itself up by the motors
And brushes the the bluff crumbs from its unworthy shoulders
And we all resume our voluntary torment
Hurry, drown your fuckin' phone like an informant

Honestly, I think the song’s pretty awesome. It’s dope as hell to me. The following track is called Most Improved, and I don’t love it quite as much, but it’s still very good. It’s basically him rapping about the back-handed compliment that is “you’re finally good at ‘x.'”

It’s like getting your hands on full blown scuba
Gear after years of using shitty broken snorkel tubes
Well, I guess it all depends on your flow; it's true
That either option gives a guy a pretty good ocean cruise
And hell, if you can struggle through
With Pokemon bandaids on your aching, weeping open wounds
And still pull that off I guess I'd vote for you too
Most improved

The beat here kinda sounds like something that’d be in an 80s Pop song. Not one of those loud, synth-heavy songs though. It’d be something smoother, like Michael Jackson’s Human Nature. Anyway, the hook isn’t really anything special to me, but it serves its purpose well enough. The verses themselves are the selling point of this track to me. The beat is definitely good, but it’s not one of my favorites on the album. Overall I think it’s a dope track, just not one of my favorites. The following track is Gimme What I Need. I really love the way Headtrip was flowing here.

It goes, “Make money-money, make money-money”
Wake up every mornin’ and perform, shit it takes somethin’ from ya
Goes, “Fake money-money” Fate funny, huh?
Waitin’ for the punch; yeah, there’s bounty for patient, so they told me
Hold weights like a dumbbell pressure, go ape for the numb,
None lesser than a nom nom nibbler ’til the bait looks better every week
Nah don’t measure it, I’ll pay for what I get; Wait, stay and have a bit

The way the beat kinda evolves during the hook sounds really awesome. I actually think this song has one of the best hooks on the album to be honest. There’s a remix of this song at the very end of the album produced by Blockhead, and it’s very good. I genuinely can’t decide which version I prefer. I like them both so much that I just kept both of them in my library. I will say that the Blockhead version definitely sounds more detailed. There’s a lot going on in that beat. Headtrip is basically rapping about being an addict. At least, I think that’s what he’s rapping about. There might be some deeper level that I’m not really reaching into yet, but on the surface it’s about addiction.

Alcohol and bogies, a little bit o’ weed.
Feed me, gimme that, gimme what I need
It takes a lot o’ fuel to run this rusted out machine
Gimme what I, gimme what I, gimme what I need
Adderall and cocaine, Ritalin and speed
Feed me, please, gimme what I need
I'm takin' what it's takin' me to get me through the week, I'm weak
Gimme what I need or I'ma freak, I'm a fiend

So yeah. I think the song is dope as hell. Same goes for the remix. The title track, Dreamery, is a major highlight for me on this album. I think C $ Burns’ production here is absolutely amazing. It’s seriously a beautiful instrumental, and I think it fits the content of the song perfectly. It definitely sounds dreamy. I love Lt. Headtrip’s relatively toned down vocal delivery here as well. The lyrics sound like an acid trip.

This is not my hallucination
This not my beautiful poem
I am just an intruder
An alien who meandered into a funeral home
The crowd, uncanny; the tomb, enclosed
I found my family, confused, reposed
They looked right past me, through my skull
Of course, it was my tomb all along

I love how his cadence slows down during the hook, and then the beat kinda switches up and gets even prettier for the second verse. There’s really not a single aspect of this song that I didn’t fall in love with. The production, writing, flows, and hook are all beautiful. The song is fucking amazing. Track 9 is entitled Strange Attractors. The beat here is once again very pretty. I don’t know exactly what that instrument is, but it kinda reminds me of the Napoleon Dynamite soundtrack. For reference, it reminds me of the same instrument used at the beginning of Huey by Earl Sweatshirt. Headtrip’s rapping here definitely feels more abstract than on some of the other tracks. I don’t feel like I’m fully grasping the content. The shit sounds really cool though.

The Big Dipper’s handle reaches toward the North Star
My inner compass has been disoriented so far
I like to visit the waves and ride their temperament to skeletons
Then melt into the shore, I’ve never felt this way before
To think I dealt with a divorce then see my shelter as a hostel dormitory
Got me awful claustrophobic under open skies
And an ocean sighing, and a cold wind crying from the north

Even though I don’t know exactly what he was trying to communicate, I think the closing lines about being a puddle were really cool. This song is kinda short, and it just consists of one verse with no hook or bridge or anything like that. I don’t even really care though. The writing is very cool, and I love the dreamy production. The song is dope as hell. The penultimate track is entitled Celestial Mourning. The production here is once again pretty dreamy, and relatively downtempo. I really like Headtrip’s kind of monotone, relaxed delivery here. The song definitely feels darker than most of the other tracks, especially the ones at the beginning of the album. The writing here is really goddamn awesome to me too.

A group hallucination, a mass mirage, a mutual vision, a falsehood or a pristine riptide
Full of sirens with an undeniable vibrance that disguises the tide
I followed this song to its grave, the site was already made
I stopped to calculate the shape and size and came to find in terror it was mine all along
I made my bed in the moss, I laid for centuries while longing for process to stop
While also reaping its benefits; my resentment was necessary but equally tepid
I knew my sentence was temporary, the dream of the wind fish
A scene from a tragedy or a comedy; I cannot accept this dream as imaginary

Once again, the abstract content kinda had me confused. I like when I have to do some thinking to find a valid interpretation though. I do kind of have my own interpretation of this song, but I don’t wanna be wrong and sound dumb, so I kinda wanna keep it to myself. I’ll just be kinda vague with it; he’s definitely still rapping about dreams here. That’s as much as I’ll say.

I battle my fantasies, break bread with my nightmares
I like to stare god in my eyes, I know I’m right here
Pioneer of my own mind folds, I’m tired, old
And reborn daily, it’s draining

Just like with the preceding track, this one’s kind of short and has no hook or bridge. It’s a very straightforward song, but I just feel like everything here is really well done. The dreamy production is great, and the writing from Lt. Headtrip had me hooked throughout the runtime of the song. It’s dope as hell. The closing track is entitled Escape Cult, and it’s yet another highlight for me. The production here is fantastic. The song is only 101 seconds long, but it’s still fire to me. I think it works really well as an outro.

They say this solar system spins in a massive disc
Of concentrated systems that spin in the vast abyss
Forming a cluster, a galaxy
Which travels through this universe haphazardly
Perhaps it's real, perhaps it all imaginary
And I’m no astronomer, but I can see beyond the atmosphere
And humbly ponder the gravity of my passions here
Kiss the flask on the bluffs, off balance, cheers
I’m waiting for the canopy to tear
I watch my stubborn feet waltz along the beach
As if completely disconnected from my being, it’s freeing
My tongue is the wind's, my blood is the sea's
This island is a dream that does not belong to me

Since this song is so short, there’s not really that much going on structurally, but I love the beat, and the verse is very well written. I think it’s dope as hell.


This album is pretty amazing to me to be honest. I think C $ Burns’ production is absolutely superb, and Lt. Headtrip is a very talented writer. So, this album has a recurring motif of an island, and I wasn’t totally sure what it was supposed to represent at first. I actually think it’s supposed to represent a dream itself now. You wanna know why? He literally says it at the very end of the closing song. The last line on the album is, “this island is a dream that does not belong to me.” Everything kinda clicked after I heard that. At the beginning of the album he was trying to catch the ferry to the island, and the island is its own recurring character throughout the the entire project. I think that’s pretty cool. I just feel like he really nailed the concept here. I found every track pretty interesting, and these beats are fire. I wasn’t expecting C $ Burns’ production to be quite this good. Not that I thought he’d be bad, but this is some next level shit. A lot of these beats sound like they’re handled by a full production team rather than just one dude. He put his ass into these beats. Lt. Headtrip killed this shit too. I love his flow, and his writing had me hooked throughout the whole album. Don’t sleep on this shit. It’s dope af.

Favorite Song: Dreamery
Least Favorite Song: Most Improved

90

Grade: A

Tell me if I'm trippin'

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