Hip Hop Bad Ass and Odd Future posse leader Tyler Gregory Okonma, better known as TYLER, THE CREATOR is back. But wait a moment, has he ever been away? Actually not really. Since the collective’s big break somewhere between 2010 and 2011, this rap kid always showed presence, either with trolling, pranking and offending or just his all time attendance in nearly every Odd Future related project. No matter if you love him or hate him, whether you are into hip hop or not, he’s in any case a smart storyteller with various flow, dropping his verses on some of the freshest beats.
And that’s how we think about this record, it’s the third album of a 22 year old skate kid, with the aim to tell stories. TYLER‘s main issues in this case are private aspects of family related experiences like the absence of his father or the death of his grandmother. But also critical thoughts in being suddenly famous, and of course some love stories. Here TYLER, THE CREATOR shows his biggest narrative talent, he switches between characters and gives different point of views, like in Colossus when he describes the relation between an addicted fan boy and himself, trying to keep free space from all the hysteria. There are also some alter egos taking place on the release, for example Dr. TC, a therapist, doing sessions with Tyler since the first two albums Bastard and Goblin, and also the attendant patients named Wolf and Sam, all representing a connection between those different album’s story lines.
Additionally special in an artist collective’s work is the feature list. So like TYLER, THE CREATOR appeared on much other Odd Future releases, the whole posse know appears on his record what brings a lot of versatility to this 18 song comprising ego trip. Besides long time collaborators Hodgy Beats and Earl Sweatshirt the other famous Odd Future member and Grammy Award winner FRANK OCEAN show up frequently, giving those songs this lovely R’nB turn which we already know and love. Further soul icon Erykah Badu joins the teenage love story Treehome95 with some sweet and unique vocal parts. That song is followed by the freakin’ Baile Funk like track Tamale, featuring a pumping bass and some vocal samples of singer Tallulah. At least here you can see Tyler’s progress in production and songwriting, so Wolf is definitely his most interesting and multifaceted album up to now. Of course the excessive usage of highly explicit lyrics, as well as debatable statements in race, gender, sexuality and violence at all are still existing, but as we said: this is the album of 22 year old kid, who likes to tell us a story.