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Review: Odd Future – The OF Tape Vol.2
April 2, 2012
If you’re already familiar with OFWGKTA, Odd Future or simply OF, it’s doubtful that you’ll have been introduced to them after sharing playlists with an avid feminist. Their latest release, The OF Tape Vol. 2, delivers tracks as tasty but certainly by no means as sweet as the frosted, pink doughnut served up on the cover, with enough ‘bitches’ and ‘hoes’ references to make Hugh Heffner blush.
With low-tech ideals, The OF Tape Vol. 2 is definitely relatable to any aspiring producers, however OF are well and truly past the stage of hosting impromptu rap battles in skateparks, as despite this latest release being their first studio album, it is in no way a debut, as the now 11 piece from Los Angeles, have already cemented a notoriety online after the release of their 2008 mixtape. Taking inspiration from the likes of N*E*R*D, OF’s driving force, Tyler, The Creator, presents a Hip Hop album that conceptually is as unsurprising as Sean Combs opting for another name change, with the majority of lyrics directed at the obligatory scenario of being filthy rich and surrounded by an enviable number of ‘bitches,’ sometimes to the extent of a track being easily mistaken as a cameo laden Lonely Island short for Saturday Night Live. Particularly in the instance of the aptly titled, ‘We Got Bitches,’ which goes on to list everything they got; (they ‘got bitches’ they ‘got cars’ and they ‘got jacuzzis’ with yet another ‘bitch’ doing something unmentionable to their unmentionables), you expect the arrival of Akon or Justin Timberlake jumping on the Andy Samberg driven bandwagon, however, this album is far from parody, and although not all the lyrics should be taken too seriously, the music definitely should.
Admittedly, not the most unique or ground breaking of sounds, OF successfully secure the longevity of alt hip hop by, despite conforming to the genre more or less to the letter, promoting accomplished beats, particularly on the closing track Oldie, lasting an epic ten minutes, that make it exceedingly difficult to refrain from replicating some sort of 8 Mile/Lose Yourself arm motion. Easily the best track on the entire album, Oldie spits with conviction, as lyrics flow as continuously as Cristal used to in the 90s, and completely justifies the last line ‘just admit, not only are we talented, we’re rad as f**k, bitches.’ Although there’s undeniable diversity musically between tracks on the album itself, there is little originality to set OF apart from anyone else, and again, the lyrics fail to change the subject through the majority of the album. In spite of the latter, if you’re willing to accept The OF Tape Vol. 2 for everything that it delivers so unashamedly, and listen to it in its entirety with tongue pressed firmly in cheek, then the album is a success, as what it lacks in maturity, it certainly makes up for in potential.