Some Rap Songs – Earl Sweatshirt – 8.7

Earl Sweatshirt’s long awaited recent album is a fascinating turn for Earl and his most artistically fresh and ambitious release yet. For an album with a 25 minute run length and the majority of the 15 tracks barely pushing the two minute mark. I’d usually say that each song is too short to have any lasting memorable effect on me. But that’s not the case with these tracks. The lyrical depth and thematic focus in this album is what makes each song memorable. This album definitely demands your full attention, especially in the first few listens, because Earl is one of the most meaningful rap artists around today, but the songs aren’t too long that the inpatient listener would lose interest. And that’s even before mentioning the stunning production. I don’t think I’ve heard hip hop production this incredibly creative or outlandish for a while. It’s so unexpected and daring that on the face of it, this production shouldn’t work, but it really really does. I think Some Rap Songs is the moment now where Earl has come full circle and perfected his sound. The dark themes and subjects from Earl’s past records are still at the forefront of this album, but in terms of listening experience, if IDLSIDGO was a nightmare come to life, Some Rap Songs is like a fun walk on the beach. This album does go on a bit of a strange turn in the second half to some mixed feelings. But overall this is an excellent piece of music.

1. Shattered Dreams – 7
2. Red Water – 6.8
3. Cold Summers – 8.5
4. Nowhere2go – 8.7
5. December 24 – 8.6
6. Ontheway! – 8.5
7. The Mint – 8.4
8. The Bends – 8
9. Loosie – 8
10. Azucar – 9
11. Eclipse – 8.1
12. Veins – 8.1
13. Playing Possum – N/A
14. Peanut – 8
15. Riot! – N/A