Review Summary: White guys rejoice! Everyone's favorite cat loving awkward doughnut eating strange experimental rapper is back. Now complete with 20% more emotion, less obnoxious bullshit, and a hint of sincerity.
This is an odd future not many predicted...especially from the last album, "Goblin", a dark, strange, and unfortunately bleak record.
I can graciously say that both his rap game and production this time around is not just a step above Goblin, he’s riding an escalator compared to his previous album. Although Tyler doesn't seem to be interested in pronouncing his technical abilities when it comes to spitting out his offensively fun and subtle story lyrics, his flow and sense of awareness is what keeps you listening. Tyler is a lot more introspective this time around, with themes consisting of his dislike of fame, a continuation (or even a prequel, not much is said) of his chat with his psychiatrist, setting things straight with accusations, and even a relaxed piece, “Answer” where he talks about hoping to talk to his dad once in his life even though he hates him for walking out on him. In fact, everyone’s features on this LP are above satisfactory. Take a look at Domo Genesis on “Rusty.” Where the hell was this on “No Idols” huh? He murdered that track with Tyler and Earl Sweatshirt.
Coming back to “Answer,” it’s such an interesting piece production wise. One of the first tracks I believe Tyler decided to just use drums and a guitar to create an atmosphere. The contrast is superb too, a sarcastic attitude coupled with a mellow tune you’d find on an indie pop record. What I didn't like about Goblin’s production is that it felt much too claustrophobic and trapped sounding. Wolf has much more ambition in its sound, though one gripe is that the album sounds a little too “samey” in the production route. It’s over an hour long, so I wish there were more tracks like “Answer” or more bombastic songs such as the lead single, “Domo23,” or “Trashwang” to replace a couple tracks that were downright boring. “Pigs” and the first two songs on the triple track, “Partyisntover/Campfire/Bimmer” are too forgettable and could easily be ditched to reduce time on the album. Maybe even the song “Awkward” as well, which is indeed awkward. Props for creating that emotion efficiently though.
The album definitely isn’t an hour of something like “Tamale,” fast, violent, and fun. And there are some points in songs that I wish were further carried out, such as the intensity of “IFHY,” where the ending seemed to me anti-climactic compared to the middle of the song. That was a letdown to an otherwise greatly composed song. Tyler sees himself taking a step back this time to look at the bigger picture and makes a more well-rounded record. Tyler still has more to prove before being labeled as a musical genius, but for someone in his early 20’s sporting fantastic production like this and the talent to create a slightly confusing yet oddly intriguing story-line that spans 3 albums, I’d say he’s doing a “Kill em’ All” job.