By Scott Christensen, August 17 2017 —
Two years after releasing his last album, Cherry Bomb, Tyler, the Creator comes full force with Flower Boy, his best project yet. Having improved his rapping and production since his 2011 debut, Goblin, Flower Boy blossoms as a well-structured and original project.
The album opens with Tyler’s signature self-reflective style of storytelling. “Foreword” sets the tone of the album with a melodic hook and production that makes the beat pop.
Tyler’s lyrics have gradually come to focus less on misunderstood teenage angst and more on misunderstood musical success.
What makes Flower Boy most enjoyable is Tyler’s new approach to his own style. In “Who Dat Boy,” Tyler’s previously psychopathic alter ego changes to a supervillain persona reminiscent of MF Doom’s iconic villainy. Hearing him tie together clever wordplay with a new style that compliments his deep voice is exciting.
Another interesting aspect of the album is Tyler’s singing. While he’s experimented with his voice since Wolf, Tyler has often stated that he wants to improve his singing. It finally comes to the forefront with songs like “Boredom,” where Tyler joins Rex Orange County in singing the hook. This gives the music a new dimension and it’ll be interesting to see how his singing evolves.
The biggest drawback to this album is the lyrics. As well-written as they are — with thoughtful rhyme schemes and well-paced flow — the lyrics blend together after multiple listens. The many lyrics about relationships, Tyler’s infatuation with McLaren cars or even jewelry quickly mesh together.
Despite this, Flower Boy is Tyler, the Creator’s best album. He’s continually been described as an artist with a lot of potential and now he has finally tapped into it. Even if you’ve never enjoyed what Tyler has released in this past, you should give this album a chance.