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Store Rotation: Earl Sweatshirt

Music

30.03.2020 - OFWGKTA

Store Rotation: Earl Sweatshirt

Having gathered buzz off his self titled mixtape "Earl", which was released by his cohort Tyler, the Creator in early 2010, the Los Angeles native Thebe Neruda Kgositsile put himself and his posse on the map. The appalling subject matter and sinister tone of the overall LP received polarizing reactions from fans and critics alike, contributing to ODD FUTURE’s inevitable rise to prominence. In 2012, Thebe reemerged back in the music industry through a couple of highly regarded guest features, such as his verse on Frank Ocean’s "Channel Orange", and subsequently signed to Columbia Records for a solo deal which led to the release of his 2013 debut album "Doris".

To the surprise of eager ODD FUTURE fans however, the facets that made "Earl" enticing were exchanged for “Doris”’s more developed and somber sound which is coupled by a delivery brought to you from an apathetic genius. Earl reflects on the inevitable conflict he faces with fans that long for the old material, while attempting to cope with the sudden rise to fame.

In March of 2015 Earl returns with his sophomore album "I Don´t Like Shit, I Don’t Go Outside". The mantra of this project is: Finding himself being AWOL as his posse dismantles. Leaving ODD FUTURE behind, Earl instead collaborates with underground East Coast rappers and ventures into dark places. Masterfully wrapped into material half an hour long, accompanied by stripped down instrumentals and personal tales, this very personal piece is the transitioning stage to finding the sound Earl eventually achieves.

The first single "Nowhere2go" encapsulates the entire sonicall direction of Some Rap Songs: It is hauntingly beautiful. Being heavily involved with experimental hip-hop group sLUms, the artistic give and take relationship is evident. The passing of his father and uncle and Earl’s newfound surrounding dictate the stylistic and thematic themes. The disorienting loops cause for a drowning sense of dread, the cryptic lyrics that wallow on the cusp of comprehension only adds to the abstract beauty of this piece. But here sorrow and resentment are substituted with embrace and acceptance, literally running through all phases of grief throughout his musical development. The last track "Riot!" samples the aforementioned uncle: Hugh Masekela, triumphantly closing the album and leaving the listener with feelings of catharsis and reconciliation.#

Check out our favorite Earl videos and make sure to listen into our updated Spotify playlist below. Give it a follow, too!

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