Earl Sweatshirt (of Odd Future) – EARL

It was sometime last week where one of my best friends Tara brought up Odd Future to me in conversation for the first time.  “You hear about that Odd Future show at Webster Hall?  Tickets are already sold out.”  I had to answer that question with another question: “Who is Odd Future?”

I was directed to their site a couple of days later.  A good adjective to describe it?  Well…odd.  OFWGKTA (a straight-forward gut-punch acronym for the collective’s full proper name, Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All) is a team of producer / rapper / artist / skater kids from LA.  And when I say kids, I mean that literally.  None of them are legally old enough to drink (but that’s never stopped them before).  The crew is helmed by the hyperactive and hyper-talented Tyler, The Creator.  He’s the main beatmaker and easily the craziest.  A quick YouTube search can confirm that within minutes.  I was never a bad ass, but sometimes I miss being a teenager.

There are a plethora of Odd Future projects to choose from, all free.  So I asked what I should listen to first.  EARL was the one I was directed to.  And to put it in a nutshell, I WAS BLOWN AWAY.  Earl Sweatshirt is easily the crew’s best emcee, reminiscent of ’98 Eminem, peak-era Juggaknots and the Outsidaz at their wildest.  I know those are bold comparisons, but it’s absolutely true.  And the beats (done by the aformentioned Tyler) are straight dirty, raw, spacey lo-fi bangers.  The Rawkus and Def Jux sensibilities have re-surfaced in a digital world.  And it’s exciting to see.  I’ve been playing EARL non-stop for the past couple of days.

With just weeks to spare, Odd Future is my favorite new find of 2010.  Hands down.

DISCLAIMER:  Earl Sweatshirt’s album is foul-mouthed, graphic and borderline beyond disturbing.  Imagine you put a 16-year old kid in front of a TV and played him nothing but porn, graphically violent movies, obscene drug use and late ’90s underground NYC hip-hop non-f*cking-stop for X amount of days.  And then you gave him a laptop and told him to go nuts.  This would probably be the outcome.  Don’t believe me?  Watch this video this first if you’re feeling brave.

DOWNLOAD | Earl Sweatshirt – EARL

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