Three years since releasing I Don’t Like Shit, I Don’t Go Outside, Earl Sweatshirt reemerged with a few teasers and an official video trailer confirming that new music was on the horizon. After “Nowhere2go” and “The Mint,” Earl marked his return with Some Rap Songs, his third studio album released on Tan Cressida and Columbia Records.
To many, Earl is rap’s golden child, earning a dedicated fan base for his vulnerability and honesty in his songs. I Don’t Like Shit was Earl’s moment in the spotlight, creating relatable music that broached topics of battling darkness and depression. For his age, he’s an exceptional lyricist and technically sharp, with his legend growing stronger with each showcase of his ability. So when he decides to be quiet and focus on creating, it means his eventual return will be much more impactful.
Some Rap Songs is Earl’s concept of brevity fully formed. As he told Vulture, the title comes from his obsession with “simplifying shit.”
"People take a lot of liberties, I feel like. Incomplete shit is really stressful to me, and the concept of unsimplified fractions is really stressful to me,” he said. “So, with things like the album title, how I structure shit, and even how I write, it was really just like, What is this? The album title was kind of a response to that question.”
The 15-track album features appearances by his parents—his mother, Cheryl Harris, and his late father, South African poet Keorapetse Kgositsile—as well as Navy Blue, who appears on “The Mint.” You’ll find Some Rap Songs upholds the lyrical standard of his previous projects, where he especially shines on “Red Water,” “December24,” and “Playing Possum.” He mentions Donald Trump on “Veins,” rapping, “Stuck in Trumpland watching subtlety decayin'/I ain't touch a Xan, when it is time to put my burnt body in a case/Tell my mom I said 'thank you.'
As a producer, he brings an infinite amount of magnetic loops that work for his effortless flow. Listen to the evolution of Earl below.