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Culture Shock

Cheat Codes -- Feels Great ft. Fetty Wap and CVBZ

Rating: 4/7

EDM trio Cheat Codes recently came out with the music video for “Feels Great” featuring Fetty Wap and CVBZ. It’s an upbeat track with the feel of a summer drive and kicking back with old and new friends alike. The lyrics paint a story of youth and reminiscence, of having fun in the present while remembering the past, and the video is the perfect match. Driving dirtbikes through a California desert landscape, linking arms around friends, skateboarding down makeshift ramps and dancing under the sprinkle of a water hose—the music video perfectly portrays the youthful and wholesome experience of finding happiness in being around those you love.

The tropical house feel of the track is a Cheat Codes staple, and while it may not be the best song to play to wrap up a festival set, its “good vibes” feel, catchy hook, and chorus make for a song just about anyone can get into. Fetty Wap and his signature “yeaaauuhhh” (you know what I’m talking about) and CVBZ make great additions to the track’s composition; occasionally it can be a bit of a challenge for EDM and rap to collaborate, as usually one outshines the other or forces the other to take a different form than it would’ve if it had performed by itself. The result can be a pretty awkward sounding track. An example that comes to mind is Calvin Harris’ “Holiday” with Snoop Dogg, John Legend, and Takeoff, in which Calvin completely altered his production and forced it to take a back seat to the features—but talking about Calvin Harris and his massive decline in production value is for another time. “Feels Great” shares the style of all three artists/groups equally, making for a smooth and effortless-feeling track.

That all being said, I do have to say that it’s pretty much like every summer bop ever made. Before even clicking on the music video, I knew exactly what it was going to be. I don’t expect anything different from Cheat Codes, but it would be cool to see even the slightest deviation from their normal sound in future tracks. Dancing Astronaut said Cheat Codes “continues to be a positive force in the dance space, constantly shifting their sound and breaking into cutting-edge genres,” which I can partially agree with. Cheat Codes does a have a positive influence in what can be a negatively viewed scene; in fact, the first thing I noticed about the music video was the absence of drugs or alcohol, which was refreshing to see since it is a rarity that a song about youth and celebration is without references to using substances. As far as Cheat Codes branching into other genres, I don’t see that happening with this track. Tropical house is a hit for most because of its comfortable blend of pop, EDM, and rap—some of the most popular genres at the moment.

For what it is, it’s not bad. It’s not my cup of tea, but it effectively serves the purpose and elicits the feelings it’s trying for. In the future, I’d like to see Cheat Codes change up their style and the message of their songs in the future. We have enough songs about summer, youth, drive-thrus, remembering the past, and having crushes on our best friends. I hope Cheat Codes can see that soon and tries for something different to their original brand.


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