There isn’t much that Tyler, The Creator hasn’t done in the last five years – from collaborating with Vans to hosting his own festivals and fashion shows, what more does he have left up his sleeve? If new single ‘Who Dat Boy?’, which was released at midnight UK time after a week of countdown teasers across Tyler’s social medias, is anything to go by it is clear that he has a LOT more to offer.
The new track sees Tyler returning to his usual gruesome ways, that we saw all the way back in 2011 with Yonkers, in accompaniment with A$AP Rocky this time. There are very few who haven’t had the chance to appear on a Tyler record, his 2015 album Cherry Bomb featured an incredible roster of: Kanye West, Lil Wayne, Schoolboy Q, Pharrell Williams and Roy Ayers to name a few. It appears that Tyler may be taking the same route with his next record, showcasing yet another wave of excellence.
The video begins with a shot of Tyler working on some electric contraption, with a poster of Leonardo DiCaprio in Romeo and Juliet situated above him. Tyler’s experiment rapidly goes terribly wrong and sees him getting half of his face blown off. We then see a Freddy Krueger-esque faced Tyler making his way out of the house and down a colourful, flower covered suburban street as he finds his way to the door of Dr. A$AP Rocky, who attempts to give Tyler a new face before the cops show up. Fans of Tyler would expect nothing less, I mean he’s already ate cockroaches and mock-hung himself…
The track itself is carried by synth and bass heavy instrumentation unlike anything we have heard of Tyler before. The dark and gritty visuals are paralleled with perfection to the lyricism of both Tyler and Rocky, who aggressively battle bar for bar like two vicious dogs fighting in the street. It’s weird, it’s provocative and it’s untimely refreshing to see and hear new material from Tyler who has been away for little over two years now. The track sees Rocky and Tyler’s creative chemistry coming together once again, seen previously in ‘What The Fuck Right Now?’, a fiery freestyle over Kanye West’s ‘Freestyle 4’ which dropped last year. Tyler’s intent and next direction is clearly encompassed with: “Fuck the rap, I’m tryna own a planet”.
Tyler treated us not once, but twice with a second number featuring Frank Ocean, Steve Lacy and Anna Of The North. ‘911 / Mr. Lonely’ is a silky smooth track, which could have sat comfortably in Cherry Bomb, that sees Tyler cover the topics of lost loves, insecurity and loneliness. Listen here:
Details of Tyler’s new album are yet to be officially announced but theorists online have discovered that Tyler has consistently partook in the trend of dropping a new song and video little under a week before the release of a new LP. If this anything to go by, the chances are very likely of a new Tyler, The Creator record being with us next week.
Words by Ben Davies
(featured image courtesy of Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for Coachella)