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Collective: Odd Future

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Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All

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Re: Collective: Odd Future

Postby Robert G on Thu May 19, 2011 5:08 pm

Friend of mine posted this Tiger Beatdown article titled "Tyler, The Creator, Creates 43-Year-Old “Joke” ".

Hey! Do you know who Tyler, the Creator is? No? Good for you. I wish I’d never heard of the little discharge-wad. But for those of unfamiliar: Consider all the [TRIGGER WARNINGS] that I basically don’t use a lot to be in full effect, and then think Eminem. And then do whatever it takes to stop you from thinking about Eminem — I like to punch a pillow! — and then understand that Tyler, the Creator of Odd Future is just the culture’s latest excuse to get all het up about how “provocative” and “edgy” it is to rap about how much you like to rape ladies (because that is a totally unpopular activity, not at all common in society today), and also, say “faggot” a lot (also uncommon, and without consequence), and also, o his genius! O, his technical mastery! O, he will save music from itself! Which might be true. I dunno. I was distracted by all the raping.

But, long story short, many of the critiques you will read of the Odd Future are summed up in this post from Sara Quin of Tegan and Sara:

When will misogynistic and homophobic ranting and raving result in meaningful repercussions in the entertainment industry? When will they be treated with the same seriousness as racist and anti-Semitic offenses? While an artist who can barely get a sentence fragment out without using homophobic slurs is celebrated on the cover of every magazine, blog and newspaper, I’m disheartened that any self-respecting human being could stand in support with a message so vile.

As journalists and colleagues defend, excuse and congratulate ‘Tyler, the Creator,’ I find it impossible not to comment. In any other industry would I be expected to tolerate, overlook and find deeper meaning in this kid’s sickening rhetoric? Why should I care about this music or its “brilliance” when the message is so repulsive and irresponsible?

It is not the best call-out of Tyler that you will ever read; nor is it the most nuanced. (The Oppression Olympics thing going on in the second sentence is like, OOF.) But it is the most prominent, and the one which put the most pressure on Tyler. The one to which he would be EXPECTED to respond, basically.

And respond he did!

“If Tegan And Sara Need Some Hard Dick, Hit Me Up,” Tweeted Tyler, the Creator.

Now: There are a few things I would like you to do with this Tweet. For one, I would like you to listen to it. No, really: Hold your ear up to the computer monitor. Turn the volume up as far as it can go. You got speakers? Plug those in, too. Really zone in. Squeeze your eyes shut. Click through to the original, and listen to that!

Now: Does this Tweet, as far as you can tell, make ANY MUSIC AT ALL? No? Phew! I thought I was alone, in not hearing music when I looked at this delightful Tweet from Tyler, the Creator!

And this means a few things. For example: That the “it’s all about the music” pose is a fucking lie. That all of the boys who are snickering at this, and/or applauding it (and oh, yes, there were plenty) are not enjoying the “music.” They’re enjoying the misogyny. They’re enjoying the suggestion that uppity women should have a dick shoved in them to shut them up. They’re enjoying the misogyny. Because this shit ain’t music. It’s a fucking Tweet. Tweets, it’s my understanding, are distinctively unmusical. And furthermore: That Tyler’s delightful “humor” is not the point. Because this shit ain’t delightful “humor.” It’s not unpredictable. It’s not innovative. It’s not, under any circumstances, edgy. Because I was looking through Ye Olde Ellen Willis archives last night, and look what I found:

In January 1968, Ellen Willis went to Washington to take part in a demonstration against the Vietnam war and for black liberation, which was staged to coincide with Richard Nixon’s inaugural as president. At the demonstration, women in the group had asked to make a statement about their subordinate position within the New Left and on behalf of their own liberation. When they tried to make what they described at a “moderate, pro-movement statement,” Willis reports, men in the audience “booed, laughed, cat-called and yelled enlightened remarks like ‘Take her off the stage and fuck her.’”


So, yeah. Tyler, the Creator: On the cutting edge of humor! In 1968. But this isn’t humor: Humor has an element of surprise at the core of it. This surprises no-one. This is just hatred, following the same script that hatred always has. Although, to be fair, Tegan and Sara Quin are lesbians. And I don’t think I’ve heard anyone suggest that lesbians could be straightened out with a good deep-dicking before! That is some for-real innovative shit, right there.

And that’s how this became The Week I Finally Lost My Shit About Odd Future. Because another thing I did, which I had been trying to avoid before, was to read some accounts of their live shows. One of the defenses of Odd Future, you see, is that it is “all an act,” and that they are “sweet kids” outside of their lyrics. You want to read about some shit that is definitively not their lyrics?

Tyler bounded into the crowd and everyone surged towards him, camera phones aloft. He returned to the stage as Syd killed the track, and announced that near the bar, he’d “bumped into a bitch and she got mad.”

“Bitch is a stripper!” he yelled, and lots of people cheered and laughed at the prospect of the bitch being a stripper. “Why come to an Odd Future show if you gon’ get mad?” he asked. “Pussy musta got like five licks. Bitch is a fuckin’ stripper, yo. You can go home if you don’t like it.”


AND!

Just after two in the morning, a blonde girl surfed her way onstage and kissed Tyler, who announced, “I might legit have herpes.” The crowd laughed and started a “show your titties” chant, and she refused, looking bashful. “Then get the fuck off the stage!” Tyler yelled.


AND! From the NEW FUCKING YORKER!

A young female fan took the stage, and the crowd called for her to get naked, until she protested that she had a boyfriend, at which point the crowd chanted, “Slut! Slut! Slut!”


And I didn’t know about it until this week. You know why I didn’t know about it? Because we were “discussing” “the” “music.” Because we were talking about “lyrical provocations.” Because we were phrasing shit in the very discreet and nuanced and sophisticated the way the New Yorker does — “[Earl], like Tyler, thinks sex and violence are funny, especially in combination” — instead of saying “these guys get on stage to talk about beating women up, raping them, and occasionally mutilating their clits with broken glass, and they think that’s okay and any woman who objects, especially if she’s a lesbian, should have a dick shoved in her.”

Because real-live girls were getting harassed, hurt, told that they only had value to the extent that everyone could see their fucking tits, told that they were just a pair of tits to jerk off on or a hole to fuck, unless they don’t want to fuck, in which case fuck ‘em anyway, and bitch DON’T get fucking mad when I hurt you, FUCK YOU BITCH, your body is there for me to do what I want with, and the dudes? The white male blogger music dudes who were covering this? Who were hyping Odd Future and Tyler, the Creator? Who are hyping them still? It was happening IN FUCKING FRONT OF THEM. And it didn’t matter. It didn’t stop them for a fucking second.

It didn’t fucking matter. They didn’t think to factor it in. In point of fact, what much of the criticism about Odd Future has focused on is the idea that their live shows are the best part of what they do; the great, punk-rock, incendiary EXPERIENCE of Odd Future, is what gets discussed. And there are real girls getting harassed, IN FUCKING FRONT OF the white dudes who are writing paeans to and defenses of Odd Future, in front of the dudes who are praising Odd Future shows. And we need to be sophisticated. We need to talk “about” “the” “music.” We need to worry about whether we sound “screechy” or like “scolds,” don’t get too upset, don’t lose your shit, don’t act like this is some kind of litmus test for whether or not you can even vaguely respect a dude as a person. Well, dudes, I have a remarkable new theory for you: When it’s YOUR ass on the line, then YOU can tell ME how upset to fucking be about it, and how I should phrase that. Seriously. When Tyler is using you as a synonym for “worthless,” when Tyler wants to shove broken glass up your asshole, ring me up, and tell me how much I should care. I’ll listen, all you want, when you’re talking about the “sophistication” we should maintain in re: discussing whether or not your asshole deserves to have broken glass shoved up it. In the meantime?

Fuck “sophistication.” Fuck “distance” Fuck “irony.” And fuck Odd Future.
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Re: Collective: Odd Future

Postby bogusaurus on Thu May 19, 2011 7:07 pm

Giving them the most credit possible, these guys are a bunch of wind-up artists slinging about the f-word. It's kinda pathetic and hopefully they grow out of it.

tUnE-YarDs is bad, but it's better than this.
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Re: Collective: Odd Future

Postby Ptommydski on Thu May 19, 2011 7:14 pm

Wait, so bad people can create art too?

You're kidding me right.
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Re: Collective: Odd Future

Postby harry on Thu May 19, 2011 7:26 pm

The thing with shock value is that it'll only ever get one laugh, ever. When I hear lines about how having sex with a pregnant lady is a threesome I can't help but laugh for the initial time...subsequent listens reveal it to be juvenile college humour and I feel like a total dick for finding it funny the first time.
I was following Tyler on twitter for a while, but the guy just continually whines, the night that 'Goblin' leaked he acted like a petulant little brat about it, if I had people who gave a shit enough about my music to illegally download it I'd be a happy guy. He also has started giving people shit for jumping on the whole 'Free Earl' thing which the group themselves spearheaded and has given them so much of their popularity.
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Re: Collective: Odd Future

Postby caix on Thu May 19, 2011 7:29 pm

I checked some of this out out of curiosity from the Tune Yards thread.

Not a much of a hip hop fan, I figured there's be something about them that I'd like. Well, there isn't. I would rather listen to Cloudead or Blackstar.
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Re: Collective: Odd Future

Postby Ernest on Fri May 20, 2011 6:08 pm

Earl/Tyler versus MellowHype?
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Re: Collective: Odd Future

Postby J. Burns on Fri May 20, 2011 6:28 pm

Mellowhype by a fucking landslide.

Maybe it's because I'm burnt on the Tyler/Earl media blitz, maybe it's because I'm tiring of all the rape/faggot jokes, maybe it's just because their jams are more interesting, but I'm finding myself preferring anything Hodgy, Mike G, Domo, or Frank Ocean do, but especially Hodgy.
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Re: Collective: Odd Future

Postby eephour on Fri May 20, 2011 7:20 pm

Me too, I really like Hodgy.

Their interview with Nardwuar is pretty funny.
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Re: Collective: Odd Future

Postby Ernest on Fri May 20, 2011 7:26 pm

Me too. The first ones I heard were the two infant terriblehs of EarlWolf. MellowHype is remarkably better at everything.
Marsupialized wrote:A bus will crash and there'd be three people stepping over injured children to get out saying 'fuck them' it's just how it is with people.
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Re: Collective: Odd Future

Postby Isabelle Gall on Fri May 20, 2011 7:40 pm

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Re: Collective: Odd Future

Postby Antero on Fri May 20, 2011 7:45 pm

The first Mellowhype album was pretty eh, but Blackenedwhite was great. I still prefer EarlWolf as OF duos go, but the next Mellowhype album might change that judging by how absolutely fucking nuts "64" and "igotagun" are.
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Re: Collective: Odd Future

Postby J. Burns on Fri May 20, 2011 7:54 pm

I often wish Left Brain's beats went harder, but on the whole Mellowhype make really solid music. I could easily see them having a career after the OFWGKTAWTFBBQ hype machine fizzles out.

Earl is obviously super-talented, but I'm wondering how much of his persona is/was Tyler's influence. The interview in the New Yorker was kind of an eye opener. Also wonder what Earl thinks about "Fuck Earl's Mom" still being proudly displayed in all caps on their website after politely asking everyone to knock off the "Free Earl" stuff. If I'm allowed another wonder, if he'll actually return to OF once he gets back from Samoa.
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Re: Collective: Odd Future

Postby Ernest on Sat May 21, 2011 1:33 am

The most interesting thing about this Odd Future explosion, besides the newer spin on hip hop, is that we're essentially seeing what in the past occurred behind closed doors, and through hush hush contracts.

On the one hand, you've got a group of kids no older than high school juniors, give or take, and everything that goes with it; the temperament, the immaturity, the crassness, and the emotion, and on the other, the creation of new stars all out in the open, through their online effort; the free music, the imagery, the online presence, etc. It looks like a shitstorm, though. I don't expect much of the collective to remain together for long after the popularity either winds down, or just continues in a more subdued manner.

Everyone is getting picked up, and picked apart, especially Earl, given that New Yorker article, at the same time setting some things straight, and simultaneously fueling the mystique of Earl's by associating his (possible) dad's work in African poetry. It's less Wu Tang, than it is some weird updated Jackson 5, but with the spotlight ready to jump from one kid to another. Taking kids, or more specifically, taking a specific 'encapsulated' genuine style, and magnifying it for the world- it seems like it's the latest darker side of what the internet is possible of.
Marsupialized wrote:A bus will crash and there'd be three people stepping over injured children to get out saying 'fuck them' it's just how it is with people.
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Re: Collective: Odd Future

Postby less_cunning on Sat May 21, 2011 7:57 am

J. Burns wrote:Mellowhype by a fucking landslide.

Maybe it's because I'm burnt on the Tyler/Earl media blitz, maybe it's because I'm tiring of all the rape/faggot jokes, maybe it's just because their jams are more interesting, but I'm finding myself preferring anything Hodgy, Mike G, Domo, or Frank Ocean do, but especially Hodgy.


that's one of the things i think is going to be really ironic re: that "media blitz." the inevitable finicky hipster attention-decifit backlash. which is going to be extremely vicious & very very sad.
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Re: Collective: Odd Future

Postby Ptommydski on Sat May 21, 2011 9:47 am

More to the point, can these kids handle success? From watching interviews I feel like they are reasonably well equipped but we'll see how they survive graduating from Pitchfork buzz band to major label territory. I have fears of bumping this thread in the years to come when the system has chewed them up and spat them out.
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Re: Collective: Odd Future

Postby Antero on Sat May 21, 2011 2:21 pm

The label system isn't going to do anything to them - they got a proper, modern deal where they make their own label and get distribution through Sony. So there's that going for them.
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Re: Collective: Odd Future

Postby Bill Swansea on Mon May 30, 2011 2:02 pm

'Luper' by Earl Sweatshirt is one of the greatest love songs ever, to the point where Tyler essentially ripped it off (badly) for 'Her' on Goblin. The payoff verse at the end of 'Luper' isn't great, but everything before that with Earl being stuck in the conundrum of this girl that he both loves and hates, well I can relate to that, can't you?

"Making my eyes ache
stalking her Myspace
posted a new pic,
I mean when I say, that I fucking hate you...



...but..."


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Re: Collective: Odd Future

Postby Robert G on Mon May 30, 2011 7:42 pm

I've been having a discussion go back and forth with this girl over facebook that first started with her wondering why people like Tyler and Odd Future, but has now spun into, well, her and I now discussing about Tyler and OF in general.

The original debate was over how people could like Odd Future. What was so strange is that while she understood my argument where I explained the fallacy of equating appreciation = support for whatever is the artist's content (in this case, Tyler and his lyrics about rape), she was not okay when I explained to her that Tyler is not being ironic and then completely ignored the rest of my logic explaining Tyler's entire M.O. as an artist. She keeps equating Tyler to internet memes like this (even though Tyler is not being funny), and also that I have given Tyler a free pass for being cool/famous (what???).

She also seems to think that no man should be allowed to talk about rape or to use rape in some kind of artistic fashion, as if it's some kind of off-limits topic for being such a horrific act. This is of course, really stupid, because if you cut men out of the discussion of rape, nothing will be accomplished in changing how men are supposed to feel about it, or emphasize with women, etc.

Today she posted on my wall that article from The Advocate with Tegan & Sara's statement about Tyler and the lack of media commentary, and Tyler's comments, including his admittance that he's just using "faggot" and "gay" as substitutes for "stupid shit." I don't know what it is she was trying to get me to say or to admit to, but oddly, Owen Pallet (Canadian indie pop artist, string player/arranger, homosexual who is totally out and has no problem with being out) chimed in with this interesting tidbit:

Owen Pallet wrote:It's been said that if Tyler did a cover of "Raping A Slave" it'd be all over the news. But if Swans were to have been on the cover of Billboard, they too would have people asking themselves, "Wait a minute, are we allowed to like this?"


which raises some interesting questions. Would people be questioning Swans if Swans somehow magically got on the cover of Billboard? Would they be getting a supposed "free pass" from the media like Odd Future?
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Re: Collective: Odd Future

Postby less_cunning on Sat Jun 04, 2011 8:43 pm

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Re: Collective: Odd Future

Postby Ernest on Sat Jun 04, 2011 10:10 pm

Robert G wrote:She also seems to think that no man should be allowed to talk about rape or to use rape in some kind of artistic fashion, as if it's some kind of off-limits topic for being such a horrific act.


That's one of the worst ideas I've ever heard. And this is the internet.
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