Earl Sweatshirt has been out of the public eye for nearly 3 years, following the release of his beloved 2018 album, Some Rap Songs. The introspective rapper is now back with a track titled, “2010”. This title is significant because 2010 is when Earl was found by Tyler The Creator and invited to join Odd Future. His dark metaphors and graphic lyrics matched the vibe of Tyler and the rest of the OFWGKTA clique perfectly. Earl went on to debut his first mixtape titled, Earl in 2010 which solidified his place in the rap game and even brought in new audiences. Despite Earl’s success, his scholarly mother began to worry about the well-being of her son and his newly found fame. Thus, Earl was sent away for two years to a Samoan boarding school. Earl hated this at the time but returned with a newfound, positive outlook on life, having said to not have figured out all of his problems but has come a long way in the process of maturation. The iconic shock value lyrics that were once synonymous with Earl and Odd Future had now been swapped for bars of introspection and realism. Music is the soundtrack to the lives of many, making it all the more rewarding to mature as a listener while your favorite artist is going through that same process.
“2010” is a Black Noi$e produced track that has simple, yet effective instrumentation. There is a looping bubbly synth that slightly stutters before raising octaves, similar to the mental obstacles that Earl has had to go through before reaching a point of clarity. That clarity is the subject matter of the song as he somewhat recants the happenings of his career throughout the track. The track also features Earl’s iconic chill and laid-back flow, spitting effortless rhymes, invoking vivid imagery with his words. The Ryosuke Tanzawa directed and edited visuals were dreamlike, featuring swift transitions and bright lighting that surrounds but does not completely engulf Earl. Based on this new single and secret project that Earl dropped with The Alchemist back in September, I look forward to what’s to come. Check out the video for Earl Sweatshirt’s first official release since 2018, “2010” below.