Dominic Fike first attracted mainstream attention from his 2018 release “Don’t Forget About Me, Demos” a collection of good songs, but felt mostly unfinished-- hence “demos”. After racking up over 400 million streams on the standout track “3 Nights,” Fike released a string of singles, including two collaborations with producer Kenny Beats and one with Omar Apollo.
Since then, much anticipation has been built around a long-awaited debut album. “What Could Possibly Go Wrong” was initially scheduled to be released on July 10, but was postponed until July 31 because of the Black Lives Matter protests following the murder of George Floyd.
“What Could Possibly Go Wrong” has 14 tracks with a run time of about 34 minutes. The album starts strong with a short and sweet track, “Come Here.” The track centers around a distorted electric guitar riff pushed forward by hip-hop inspired drums. Fike offers a warped vocal performance that gives the song a rowdy and up-tempo feel.
The album’s two singles, “Chicken Tenders” and “Politics & Violence” don’t exactly give an accurate portrayal of the record sonically. These songs are both synth-heavy and are more akin to modern pop songs than are the other 12 tracks. The rest of the album centers around live instrumentation and includes influences ranging from R&B and hip-hop to punk and surf rock.
Although lyrically “What Could Possibly Go Wrong” can seem a bit rambly at times, one theme that is present throughout the record is Fike’s anxiety about his newfound fame and relationships.
On the third track, “Cancel Me,” Fike says “I hope they cancel me/So I can go be with my family.” in his signature rap-singing style. This track is a reflective moment in the record and serves as a welcome contrast to the rockstar lifestyle that Fike acknowledges in the coming songs.
On “Superstar Sh*t,” the tenth song on the record, Fike relishes in the slow moments of life in the spotlight. But also realizes that at some point, the fast life has caught up with him.
Fike’s songwriting on “What Could Possibly Go Wrong” is consistent with his previous releases. Short, catchy songs with odd structures seem to have become his style.
“What Could Possibly Go Wrong” is what Dominic Fike’s debut album should sound like. His sound has developed tastefully but remained consistent with the sound that he built his initial fanbase on. Fike has proven himself as a tremendous songwriter and certainly has an exciting career ahead of him.