Photo Credit: Suzanne Cordeiro/REX/Shutterstock
Rapper Tyler, the Creator released his fifth studio album, IGOR, on May 17, 2019. IGOR is the follow-up album to 2017’s Flower Boy. Recorded under Columbia, Tyler produced the album by himself. IGOR is a surreal breakup album that explores vulnerable emotions, hostile notions, and the desire for happiness. Tyler’s production and songwriting has created an album that further drives him toward greatness. Tyler also raps much less on this album compared to his earlier albums. The 12-tracks on the album take listeners through the highs and lows of love.
Listeners are struck with synths, beats, and ethereal lyrics on “Igor’s Theme.” It transitions into the lead single for the album. “Earfquake” is a story of a love struck person. The character feels the sting of potentially losing a person because of something done wrong. “I Think” is an upbeat song about someone falling in love. Tyler pushes through his doubts to make a relationship work. Tyler explains his acceptance of a lost love with, “Running Out Of Time.” It seems directed to an ex that lied about their actions when the relationship ended. The song pushes the ex to accept whatever occurred between them.
“New Magic Wand” is a strong song with low bass and intense synths. Tyler explores hard-edge emotions of jealously and passion. Users are left wondering whether the object of the song is a positive or negative force on Tyler’s life. “A Boy Is A Gun” and “Puppet” represent emotional barriers that Tyler is struggling to break away from, the tone and tempo changes in his voice on these tracks to emphasize his frustrated feelings. Loud drums and the lyrical delivery on the track, “What’s Good” takes listeners back in time. This is a heavy hitting song that sounds the closest to traditional hip-hop while Tyler responds to someone that went against him. “Gone, Gone/Thank You” is a flip of the previous track. It’s an upbeat dream, pop-inspired song that shows Tyler’s sadness to the situation with a lover.
“I Don’t Love You Anymore” is a thought process about someone that is soon to be an ex. The chill vibe of this song conflicts with the content and realization that is happening. “Are We Still Friends?” is a quest to get an answer from someone. While the answer is somewhat known and felt in their interactions, Tyler is in-between desire and discard for the relationship.
Solange, Frank Ocean, ASAP Ferg, Playboi Carti, Santigold, amongst many others make appearances throughout the album. None of the artists are listed as official features and it feels like they aren’t fighting for the spotlight. This adds a subtle dynamic to IGOR. Tyler explores different pitches with his voice throughout the album. This helps to emphasize the lyrics. In many songs, Tyler sounds sad, passionate, optimistic, and even a bit angry at the same time. If anything, tracks feel like the life after the passing of a rough storm. IGOR is an album of self-help anthems through introspection.
Tyler sings about the struggles of being in love with someone throughout the self-produced album IGOR. While jarring and smooth at the same time, the turbulence is something that people come to accept. Refined and emotionally charged, Tyler pushes fans to embrace the deeper path of love and overcoming the pain of a breakup. The vulnerability of IGOR is refreshing instead of the shock value that listeners are used to from Tyler, The Creator.