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Earl Sweatshirt Just Dropped a Ten Minute Epic Called "Solace," and It Is Beautiful

It's dedicated to his Mother, and it's an exorcism.
Ryan Bassil
London, GB

Listening to Earl Sweatshirt’s latest release, I Don’t Like Shit, I Don’t Go Outside, you don't feel like he’s in a good place—the record speaks to anyone who's suffered the generalized anxiety that comes from having to engage with reality when you’re “toasted as hell,” crushed under the weight of each calendar day. But its honesty feels freeing. The ability to lay emotion bare is an important light in a long black tunnel and, besides, as Earl recounted to Pitchfork last month, his songs offer a “snapshot” of his life rather than a portrait. We all go through shit: It just happens that Earl lays his on wax for posterity. Today he released “Solace,” a ten-minute long track/project/release dedicated—as he told NPR, while speaking about the recording sessions for his album IDLSIDGO—“more for my mom.” As Earl has said in interviews and his lyrics, and as longtime fans may remember, the strain between Earl and his mother was caused by the “time he spent on that island,” at the charter school in Samoa he was sent to right as Odd Future started to blow up. When that happened, the slogan “Free Earl” became a phenomenon, printed on T-shirts, hollered at rap shows, blasted on Twitter. Fans blamed Earl’s mom for his departure. “After Samoa and the shit that happened with my mom, after all that ‘Free Earl’ shit, I was super self-conscious about how I engaged my mom with the public,” Earl recently told Grantland. “I would be in a position to give an honest and nonbiased critique on my mom if there hadn’t been this immediate fucking negative image and stigma attached to her out the gate… That was the most fucked ever. People was all in her emails, people were calling her and shit”. On “Solace”, Earl Sweatshirt gets to lay his mindset down. The name of the track is telling: It’s an exorcism. A moment to set his feelings free, get them out into the world, and find comfort and peace as a result. Listen below:


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