Tyler, The Creator’s newest album “IGOR” delivers an amazing and unique story through music

Austin Emery

The story of IGOR is perhaps one of the most beautiful stories in all of hip-hop. The vocals, instruments, beats, and everything put into this album were absolutely amazing. It’s an excellent mix of hip-hop, R&B, and synth-heavy music.

Tyler, The Creator has been known for having a career unlike any other; the beginnings of it began with some of the most vulgar lyrics in the rap genre, but it then faded into Tyler talking about his feelings of loneliness, sadness, suicidal thoughts, and his own sexuality in his 2017 album Flower Boy.

Shortly before releasing his newest album on May 17, Tyler shared a message that demanded his listeners to enjoy the album in a particular, but respectable way. He asked for artists to listen to the 40 minute album without any skips, front-to-back, and free of distractions such as television and texting. I definitely recommend people to do this.

The album was produced, arranged, and written by him specifically for that method of listening. As I will speak about below, IGOR blends beautiful synths and smooth beats to create an album unlike any other. This is complemented by an underlying storyline that, over time, details a love story.

The album began with “IGOR’S THEME,” which began with a single buzzing noise. The buzzing noise soon found company in a heavy beat and a chorus that was repeated by both hip-hop sensation Lil Uzi Vert and talented R&B singer Solange Knowles; “running ‘round town they gon’ feel this one.”

The song is swiftly followed by fan-favorite “EARFQUAKE” that features Tyler, in the persona of Igor, singing “you make my earthquake” to his special someone, all while pleading for that person not to leave. Playboi Carti hops onto the track to deliver a verse that many people have mocked for its lack of clarity. Even though many people wouldn’t understand what he sung on the first listen, it was nevertheless an excellent contribution to the track.

The storyline of the album comes more into prominence at the beginning of track three. “I THINK” is all about the experience in falling in complete love in another person. Solange and Tyler sing the chorus so beautifully, while Nigerian pop samples set up a beautiful landscape. Throughout the album comedian Jerrod Carmichael serves as a narrator, helping explain the whole process of love that Igor went through.

“RUNNING OUT OF TIME” was a wonderful, peaceful track that articulated Igor’s fears of running out of time to make his partner love him. Things become more clear in the energetic track “NEW MAGIC WAND,” which lyrically speaks about how Igor wants to be the only one that his love interest is into.

“A BOY IS A GUN*” speaks about how boys too can be both protective and dangerous, an apparent nod to the 1971 film A Girl Is a Gun. His lyrics match up perfectly to the sample “Bound” by Ponderosa Twins Plus One, which was famously sampled by Kanye West on his own track “Bound 2.”

Coincidentally, Kanye West appears on the following track “PUPPET” which speaks about how he’s a puppet in the relationship he’s in. “WHAT’S GOOD” is an amazing track with a great beat. The relationship evidently ends in “GONE, GONE/THANK YOU,” where Igor finally says goodbye in such a graceful manner, using high-pitched vocals and happy melodies. At the end of the song, he thanks this person for their love and joy, adding that he doesn’t ever want to fall in love ever again.

“I DON’T LOVE YOU ANYMORE” can be seen as a celebratory track of a much-needed break-up with a simple chorus.

Perhaps the most beautiful final tracks of all time would be “ARE WE STILL FRIENDS?” A harmonic, peaceful sounding melody accompanies Igor asking if he and his ex could still be friends. One of my favorite moments of the album is encapsulated in the last minute and a half where Igor pleads for his partner to remain in contact with him.

“Don’t go green skin, keep contact.” He sings shortly before introducing Pharrell Williams, who, as expected, delivers a wonderful closing verse to the album. After Igor screams that he cannot say goodbye, the album ends with a beautiful guitar riff played by The White Stripes’ Jack White which is soon followed by a beautiful silence.

My own favorite songs off this album at the moment are “I THINK”, “NEW MAGIC WAND”, “GONE, GONE/THANK YOU”, and “ARE WE STILL FRIENDS?” I encourage you to give this album a listen, front-to-back, free of disruption, and enjoy the emotion, talent, and rhythm that this album brings. This album is a genre-bending dramatic masterpiece.