Artist of the Week: Earl Sweatshirt
Thebe Neruda Kgositsile (aka Earl Sweatshirt) is an American rapper and member of the Los Angeles based hip hop collective Odd Future.
Earl gained recognition and critical praise with his Earl mixtape (2010), a ferocious and evil-minded affair that was released when he was only 16 year old. He mysteriously disappeared the following years until it was revealed that his mother sent him to a Samoan boarding school to prevent him to hang out with his peers. At Odd Future shows, it became then a common feature for the crowd to scream “free Earl!”.
Which eventually happened when he turned out 18: Earl relocated to Los Angeles, signed a contract with Columbia Records, did several gigs with the Odd Future crew, collaborated with Frank Ocean and Flying Lotus and finally started to release an impressive trio of morbid and sophisticated singles and music videos (Chum, Whoa, Hive) that preceded the recent release of his highly personal studio debut record Doris, which already stands, by its own right, as one of the most inventive alt-rap albums of 2013.
João Pedro da Costa is a web studies scholar and a music fan.