Rarely does an artist come along that is so far from the norm that it’s shocking at first. At 20 years old, Tyler, The Creator, is the leader of the California hip-hop group Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All (OFWGKTA). The group includes eight members: Tyler, The Creator; Earl Sweatshirt; Hodgy Beats; Domo Genesis; Mike G; Frank Ocean; The Jet Age of Tomorrow and Jasper Dolphin.
Of all the rappers, Tyler has been getting the most attention lately, especially because his style strays from that of your average up-and-coming rapper. His content could easily make listeners incredibly uncomfortable, but at the same time, it’s relatable. Simultaneously, Odd Future has a rapidly growing fan base, people who don’t know whether to appreciate the music or dismiss it for it’s crude language and executives drooling at what they could become. Steve Rifkind, CEO of SRC, said that Odd Future is the best hip-hop group since the Wu Tang Clan, who Rifkind signed years ago. At this year’s SXSW festival in Austin, Texas, the group had their coming out party, where they blew away the crowds and reporters.
With the buzz at an all time high, the group’s leader, Tyler, released his second album, “Goblin” on Tuesday. The album’s lead single, “Yonkers,” was called the video of the year by Kanye West, and now has over 8.5 million views on YouTube. The video is entirely in black and white, and the highlights include Tyler eating a beetle, puking it out and hanging himself by a noose at the end of the record. As much as you want to look away, you’re drawn in by this new phenomenon. Tyler proclaims, “I’m an overachiever, so how ‘bout I start a team of leaders and pick up Stevie Wonder to be the wide receiver.” It’s hard to stop listening when he continues to catch your attention with witty lines such as this one.
“Goblin” truly shows the versatility of Tyler. He produced 14 of the 15 tracks on the album, and delivers fresh content on each record. He goes through typical issues of a young adult, but presents them in a light that few rappers have done before. He throws his harsh lyrics in your face, but you can’t help but to latch on and keep listening. His flow and production are unorthodox, simple yet complex and unlike anything the industry. He has the ability to present the content in such a unique manner, making it incredibly refreshing for hip-hop and rap fans. No two songs sound the same; there’s a fresh sound to each record on the album.
Besides “Yonkers,” “She” and “Her” stood out as two of the strongest tracks on the album. The first features Odd Future group mate Frank Ocean who contributes the first verse and the chorus on the record. Tyler tells the girl subject, “You can tell me all your problems like I really give one, but I give two for us cause you’re the one that I want.” Sticking on the topic of girls, Tyler discusses the girl he always wanted to have but never did in “Her.” Tyler says of her, “but she’s special, I know to ya’ll I come off as rough, but I’m the nicest to her.” He does come off as rough to many, but his talent is undeniable.
Tyler, The Creator and his Odd Future friends all played a big part in “Goblin.” The members of the group were able to take the opportunity to showcase their talent on the album with features on a number of songs. Tyler shines over his own production with his unique style. Once you’re able to get past the word-for-word content, the listener is truly able to accept that Tyler, The Creator and OFWGKTA are going to be a staple in the hip-hop world for years to come.