“Soundcloud rap” is a genre the same way fast food is a cuisine. It primarily exists not to be savored but scarfed down as voraciously as possible to achieve maximum endorphin rush. At its best, you’re almost mad at yourself for consuming it. You know that you’re reacting positively to an assortment of chemicals and preservatives, but you keep on eating.

The concept of “guilty pleasures” is nothing new, especially not for music. Soundcloud rap (or “mumble rap,” a description which is often grossly inaccurate in terms of enunciation abilities) is derided for shallowness and repetition by those who long for the days of “real music” with lyrics like “Bicycle, bicycle, bicycle. I want to ride my bicycle, bicycle, bicycle.” It’s also received understandable flak from rap purists for how it prioritizes flashiness and outsized personalities over lyricism or technical ability, even more than most snap music of the aughts.

If Soundcloud rappers are analogous to restaurants, Lil Pump is McDonald’s. He’s decidedly not the best of this generation, but he’s arguably the most representative in terms of what people associate with the genre: short, repetitive songs about being rich and horny and taking drugs that lean (no pun intended) heavily on their beats. His breakout single, ‘Gucci Gang’, is just over two minutes long. A YouTube edit, ‘Gucci Gang But No Repeating Words’ runs 40 seconds. You might see it as the nadir of hip-hop the same way a self-professed epicure would see the McGriddle as the nadir of dining, but like it or not, people are eating it up.

Harverd Dropout (misspelled so as to avoid a lawsuit) is Pump’s second album, but like his 2017 self-titled debut, it feels much more like a mixtape. It has quite a few songs (16 to be exact) but at 40 minutes in total length, they all run fairly lean. There are no game-changers that will convince any naysayers of the legitimacy of his art, but the worst the album gets is a bit dull and, of course, repetitive. Its best moments are rife with charismatic energy and dumb fun, but it’s also strangely conservative in how outsized it’s willing to get.

It feeling like a mixtape mainly comes from its lack of a three-act structure. To be fair, opening track ‘Drop Out’ sets the stage pretty well, but there’s no middle and end after, just an extended middle. The only way ‘Who Dat’ could be seen as an actual closer is if you consider the lyrics to be a reflection on his success, but even that’s a stretch. Pump’s been around long enough to know how he’s seen in the rap game, and he’s not doubling down by releasing a bloated, double disc affair or trying to prove that he’s on the same level of Kendrick Lamar or his frenemy, J. Cole. Say what you will about his music, but there’s no vendetta or trying to be something he’s not. The most defensive he gets is on ‘ION’, which is mostly a continuation of the “fuck school” motif.

The best way to experience Harverd Dropout is not to listen to it all at once. It’s also not to listen to one track at a time. The songs are short enough that you can play a few in a row without feeling sick, like pounding popcorn chicken. When the Kanye West-featuring ‘I Love It’ dropped last year, it seemed to have nothing going for it but memes based on Pump and Ye’s Roblox-inspired costumes in the video. Sandwiched between the pretty funny ‘Nu Uh’ (“Grandma sold crack and she still in the hood/Told her ass work 'cause all she do is cook”) and ‘ION’, it might not grow in artistic integrity, but qualities like its thick bass, earworm hook, and truncated runtime make it more endearing that it has any right to be.

Pump himself is also more endearing than he has any right to be. He’s by no means perfect, as evidenced by the prejudice towards Asians in the first version of ‘Butterfly Doors’ (the offending lyrics have been removed/censored, but the song is just a tepid Migos-knockoff that should’ve been left off). There’s also misogynistic lyrics that can’t even be acknowledged as creative (“Bust in her face and she call it a facial”) along with his use of the n-word as a non-black man. But between his shit-eating grin on the cover, absurd lines like “In the trap with a junkie here, tried it, dog food” and “I gave lean to a newborn baby” and his unpolished but zealous delivery, he has charm, as hard as it might be to admit.

He can also play pretty well with others, both producers and guest rappers. He finds beats that are competent enough to make the tracks memorable (like the thick synth motif on ‘Off White’), but not so impressive that he can’t keep up with them. His guests are pretty much all rappers who have better technical ability than him (with the possible exception of Smokepurrp), but no one seems embarrassed to be on a track with him. If anything, Pump (and 2 Chainz) should be embarrassed about YG delivering the line “And I don't do doo-doo/ so I don't do the butt” on ‘Stripper Name’. The absolute best feature is from Lil Uzi Vert on the bass-booming ‘Multi Millionaire’ (which is also one of the strongest tracks Pump has released). His charred tone and spitfire cadence matches perfectly with the warped synths and makes you hope that Uzi backpedals on his retirement announcement as soon as possible.

But what’s holding Pump back isn’t that he’s shallow, crass, or immature. It’s that he’s boxing himself in when it comes to how eccentric he’s willing to get. He’s an ambassador for a still fairly new wave of music that incenses genre gatekeepers, but he also seems to want to appease said gatekeepers by not going too off-the-wall. ‘Be Like Me’ is a pretty underwhelming track featuring Lil Wayne (someone who, at his peak, could teach Pump a thing or two about what it means to not give a fuck) and both end up feeling rather lost. Wayne feels lost throwing out weak, unclever lines (“But the kid is not my son, shout out Billie Jean”), and Pump feels lost trying to assert “Everybody wanna be like Pump” and being able to sound like even he believes it. He finds greater success when he’s just acting ridiculous, like during his vehicular impersonation in the hook for ‘Vroom Vroom Vroom’.

Lil Pump isn’t chasing a Pulitzer or even Grammy nominations with Harverd Dropout, but there could still be more effort put in or at least a willingness to take chances, even if it means more purists will turn their noses up at it. On the basis of Pump’s youth and energy, it’s a mostly enjoyable listen, but those are traits not at all unique to him, and it’s hard to feel optimistic about how much longevity he has. After all, he’s not getting any younger.