Earl Sweatshirt has always been an enigma. From the macabre mixtape debut (Earl, 2010) to his mysterious disappearance, to a Samoan reform school ("Free Earl!"), his entrance into rap foretold an Odd Future, indeed.
Though the prodigy turned prodigal son is an old soul now, that cryptic sensibility still surrounds the release of his newest single, "Nowhere2Go." He posted a couple of snippets teasing new music to social media earlier this week, but for the most part the new track comes as a surprise eagerly awaited by fans.
Over a gauzy loop, he raps with a slightly mumbled flow that forces you to listen closely. But there's a sense of clarity here, as he reflects back on his past. "I think / Spent most of my life depressed / Only thing on my mind was death / Didn't know when my time was next," he reveals near the song's outset. Like so much of Earl's personal journey, "Nowhere2Go" feels like another stepping stone on his path to self-discovery and the role solitude has played in it. "I redefine the shit / First had to find myself / I couldn't find it, uhh / I couldn't find a friend / Had to rely on my wits."
Though there's been no official word, "Nowhere2Go" sets up what would be Sweatshirt's first full-length project since his 2015 sophomore release I Don't Like S***, I Don't Go Outside.