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  • Writer's pictureMalcolm Williams

Don’t Sleep #14

Updated: May 26, 2019

Tyler, The Creator - Igor

I remember being very skeptical to jump into a Tyler album back in 2010, just because I thought he was a little weird. That changed when I was playing Saints Row 3 and found the Tyler and Odd Future records became my go to tracks. So when Kendrick dropped Section .80 and Tyler came up as a related artist I wanted to see what an entire body of work from him sounded like. I was super surprised to have liked Bastard as much as I did, then Goblin, then Wolf. I missed Cherry Bomb and Flower Boy but that tiny desk concert reminded me why I mess with Tyler’s artistry so I couldn’t miss Igor and boy am I glad I was here for this album.

I turned Igor’s theme on at work and at the top dudes were looking around like “what’s that noise?” I just kept watching them because I knew when those drums kicked that head nod and grimace was coming and I was right. When a song can gather everyone in the rooms attention before any lyrics comes in is dope. I always find myself freestyling the lyrics in those beat breaks just because it’s a fucking vibe.

My favorite track and if Twitter is an indication of anything, everyone’s favorite song on the tape is Earfquake. One of the things I suggested on a podcast a while ago is that artists leave the features off the track list and that was also a sentiment Vince Staples echoed. The amount of enjoyment you feel on that first listen when you hear a familiar voice of a song with no warning is super effective. Like when you hit the socials and everyone was super surprised and excited to have heard Playboi Carti on the track and when I realized Uncle Charlie was on there, it was beyond satisfying.

Running out of Time is one of those records that just relaxes my entire mind. Tyler somehow managed to create an alternate universe in that song with the production that takes me out of my current thought every time. Who thinks of sneaking a race car sound behind fire piano keys and finger snaps? Then the melody he catches while singing and he cuts that with his rough rapping tone, it creates a pleasant dynamic like a vanilla-chocolate ice cream cone. I can praise Tyler forever for what he did with this track, I really internalize the song because I sing the “running out of time to make you happy” aimed at myself. I don’t have forever to make these dreams and wants a reality and it feels like I’m running out of time sometimes.

Growing up being a GIGANTIC N.E.R.D fam listening to this album makes me feel great. I can really hear that Tyler studied them and utilized what he’s observed combined with the unique style he already embodies. I love how he allowed his abilities as a producer to create this World where nodding and vibing out seems mandatory, singing and rapping the lyrics seems inevitable. I got the feeling of when I first heard In Search Of... for the very first time. Igor has the ability to not only be nominated for a Grammy but a high possibility of winning one next year. I recommend it to anyone who wants to get lost in an album.

I wanna thank Tyler, The Creator for displaying to us that where you began does not have to be anywhere near the place you‘ve progressed to. Bastard and Igor sound like two completely different artists created them. Your growth as a musician is refreshing and inspiring. Congrats on this remarkable album.

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