SICK! chaotic masterpiece

Deep dive into Earl Sweatshirts mind

Fair use from Tan Cressida/Warner

Fair use from Tan Cressida/Warner

Lauren Thon

Like many Earl Sweatshirt fans, I have been waiting for a new album for a while now. Earl Sweatshirt has maintained a large fanbase through his music career. His newest album “SICK!” released on January 14th, 2022. Having a run time of only 24 minutes and 5 seconds, “SICK!” did not disappoint listeners.

The first thing that I noticed was the title of the album, “SICK!” was written amidst a pandemic. Many of the songs reference the pandemic at hand through lyrics about wearing masks and having symptoms.

In “SICK!” Earl Sweatshirt maintains sounds of some of his older albums such as “Some Rap Songs” and “Doris.” The beats on the songs have the same dark and cold feeling that we hear in “Doris”.

Starting the album off the second and third songs, such as “Sick!” and “2010,” feels as if there is a cloud of pollution over them, giving the feel of not being able to catch a deep breath. This quickly changes in the fourth song, “Vision,” where Earl Sweatshirt talks about the luxurious life he is living. If you continue to listen to the lyrics, he alludes to the fact that he is quite lonely and is “Looking for someone to laugh with.”

Throughout this album, the theme of race and being proud of being black is present. He promotes the idea that black is beautiful and you should be proud of who you are. 

Earl Sweatshirt does a phenomenal job at painting a visual picture with his lyrics. In the song “Lye,” he refers to lemon meringue, exploring different avenues and tossing the sword back into the vines. His explicit storytelling through lyrics is something that many artists strive to achieve, but not many accomplish successfully.

This album has underlying themes of carrying a lot of pressure, wanting more from life, feeling isolated and living through a pandemic. It hits close to home as a lot of people around the world are feeling the same things through this pandemic. I loved the sounds he produced on this album and for only a 24 minute run time it takes you on an emotional journey through Earl Sweatshirt’s mind. 

Earl Sweatshirt- “SICK!” ★★★★✩