“Aaand … I’mmm … back,” Odd Future’s Earl Sweatshirt ends his first rap since the group’s Internet fame exploded, launched guys like Frank Ocean, earned a VMA, and managed to sustain. The new track is titled “Home,” and it’s the best part of Earl’s return blitz, which includes a new Tumblr, new Twitter, and new site featuring the full song. (Stream it here.)
Earl had famously (like, long-form New Yorker investigative piece famously) been tucked away at a Samoan reform school since the first time most people Googled the letters OFWGKTA. Then informed rumors of his return began percolating early this month, and suddenly Earl’s promising, mid-2011 words to The New Yorker, “You’ll hear from me without a doubt when I’m ready,” sprang to mind. Odd Future front man Tyler, the Creator’s affirmative tweet could make this a sure bet, although it wouldn’t be the first time Tyler punked his fans, or even the first time he trolled us with an Earl return. But this really, hopefully, seriously sounds like Earl. (Also, Earl shows his face in a YouTube clip teasing “Home,” politely requesting 50,000 Twitter followers in order to release the song. So that seals it, right?)
The synthy production on “Home” will sound familiar to anyone who’s heard an Odd Future track — it could be a mildly brighter outtake from Tyler’s divisive Goblin album. Earl’s first few homecoming bars are fierce and full of internal rhymes that feel, cliché as it may be, effortless. Until RapGenius gets it all transcribed and explained for you (ETA based on past performance: breakfast time Thursday [Update: Boom, there it is, long before sunrise]), we can confirm the phrase “rhyme harder than nine joggers with / shin splints dodging an ornery rhinoceros.” And that flow is exactly why this is good news.
Stream “Home” at Terttlefer.com.