OFWGKTA tame the shark

Blake Gillespie

Odd Future

XXL shoot with Terry Richardson

For a moment it was too much. Adult Swim TV shows, pop-up shops across the globe alongside endless tours, mixtapes with the awkward white dude who just hangs around them on the cover, Tyler's creative freedom turning into filmed “let's play army” play dates with Trash Talk's Lee Spielman and music that began to suffer from all the lunacy that became OFWGKTA's day to day lives. To borrow their slang (and pardon the cheesy Anglified use), it was sus.

All was never lost though. Bumping “Oldie” on our cellular phones was a source of hope, even if it meant enduring a verse from Jasper Dolphin. While it was always a premature comparison, for once Odd Future had something in common with Wu-Tang Clan, as “Oldie” was the crew's “Triumph” – a track that re-introduced us to the fractured crew.

Frank Ocean's Channel Orange is available in the Odd Future store, but it feels like a satellite to the label's aesthetic. Its otherworldly lauding that will undoubtedly make it the album of the year across the board supersedes his OF affiliation. The same can be said for the upcoming Earl Sweatshirt record. OF gave them life in music, but they travel in adjacent paths not quite parallel, so that in small instances they still connect.

If we assume “Oldie” was the last song to be recorded, as it's the last song on the Vol.2 mixtape, nothing but optimism lies ahead. The anouncement of Domo Genesis' collaborative album, No Idols, with The Alchemist and the song “Elimination Chamber” (awesomeness discussed here) gave us further reason to not consider the crew down for the count. A release date of August 1 is set.

Mellowhype's “La Bonita” hits the reset button on a group that was inching dangerously towards the “horrorcore” label the crew despised for good reason. Tracks like “50” and “64” had live appeal for inciting white kid mosh pits, but it was beginning to sound as though that was Mellowhype's primary function – start shit when the live show looses steam. “La Bonita” is Hodgy and Leftbrain spritzed in Spanish fly to mask all the weed smoke clinging to their Supreme shirts as they spit game to the mamacita's around the way. Mellowhype's Numbers is out October 2.

In the spirit of OF putting all the tight-pantsed jargon about insensitivity behind them, The Internet traded remixes with Seattle's THEEsatisfaction. It's an exchange we can only hope leads to future collaborations and tours, because it's seriously time for a ladies first hip hop tour that isn't stuck in '94. The Internet will play some east coast dates with Kilo Kish, which is a start though.

And then, there's Tyler the Creator. He's dropping WOLF in the fall, November to be exact. Details are coming soon, but for now we've got “Hey You”, his collaboration with Toro Y Moi. I could theorize ad naseum as to why this track works, but I'd rather quote a Tyler lyric out of context and say, “shit sounds cool to me.” It does. Toro Y Moi's backing seems to chill the pressure on Tyler to be the absolute creator. However you currently feel about GOBLIN is your thing, but allowing it to interfere with the current status of Tyler, who sounds as though he's getting over himself on “Hey You”, is a fool's game. The “Shoot Frank” music video was indulgent, but perhaps its final scene of assasinated youths was a statement with greater weight than just some cool shit Tyler made.

Expect four to five OF-related albums in the remaining months of 2012, as it is uncertain whether Earl and Mike G (don't do him dirty, calendar year) will squeeze in.

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