By Saebean Yi,
“Don’t go into this album expecting a rap album. Don’t go into this expecting any album,” Tyler, the Creator tweeted minutes before he released his newest project, IGOR.
Tyler, the Creator somewhat followed through, as IGOR is indubitably not solely hip-hop. The album was heavily influenced by alternative R&B, and also carries a strong neo-soul tune.
IGOR follows Tyler’s 2017 album, Flower Boy, which was important for him as it was his turning point from his immature and rugged style to something much more elegant and soul-infused.
With IGOR, Tyler seems to have completely shut down all his past styles, reincarnating again as a new being with beautiful melodies and vocals.
Additionally, IGOR tells a story. IGOR’s melancholy quality is the product of Tyler’s emotionally packed album that focuses on his love story, broken relationships and reconciliation.
The entire album is produced, arranged and written by Tyler. IGOR is Tyler’s most coherent project to date and proves to be a contender for one of the best of this year.
One of the tracks in the album,“EARFQUAKE,” is easily one of the most standout tracks of the whole album, featuring vocals from Playboi Carti. The song tells of Tyler’s love at its peak, expressing his dependence for “her.”
The bridge on “EARFQUAKE” is also extremely catchy, as lines, “Don’t leave, it’s my fault (Girl)/’Cause when it all comes crashing down I’ll need you,” perfectly capture Tyler’s despair along with the smooth instrumentals in the background.
The next arc of the album is highlighted by “GONE GONE / THANK YOU,” one of the most fluid and best tracks in all of IGOR. Tyler plays a broken hearted figure, and with the help of vocals from CeeLo Green and the “Hey Girl” sample from Cullen Omori, Tyler is able to express how his “love’s gone.”
The latter half of the track, where he sings, “Thank you for the time, thank you for your mind / But I don’t ever want to fall in love again,” depicts a mature Tyler reminiscing back on the good times with his significant other. Although he’s not blinded by hate, it’s clear that he’s extremely hurt.
Tyler’s love arc ends with the final track, “ARE WE STILL FRIENDS?” which is Tyler’s internal attempt for reconciliation. While his previous tracks describe Tyler being over his ex, in this song, he suggests he is still in love.
Overall, this album was a great experience to see Tyler, the Creator at his prime in both his lyrics and production. While many Tyler fans wished he had gone back to his grimy hip-hop ways, I assure you that this album is easily Tyler’s best.