Sick!, a Glimmering Beam of Hope in Earl’s Discography

Mikko Hansen, Pawprint Staff Reporter

Earl Sweatshirt has been a prominent rapper whose incredible lyricism comes from explaining so much with few words. Usually, he depicts stories of his depression from the things going around him, such as the death of his family members or, most recently, the pandemic. The thoughts that he has been known for continue on “Sick!” in a more jazz-inspired theme.

Earl gives his thoughts about the pandemic, mentioning the masks and isolation. He has had plenty of time for self-reflection during the isolation, as mentioned in “Tabula Rasa.” 

On “Sick!” Earl has also shifted into making some hard-hitting bangers, most notably on “Titanic.” It’s a song where he reflects on 2011 and his coming back from Samoa. Mentioning how he started making music from influences such as “MF DOOM” and “Alchemist.”

“Sick!” is a silky smooth jazz-rap album that came with the help of 7 different producers on this short album. They all come together to make Earl’s grandest and most cohesive album. One prime example is the “Old Friends” opener track, where dramatic string instruments take center stage while Earl raps. 

Although Earl has created a very close-knitted album, “Sick!” is also Earl’s least ambitious album. It always feels like Earl is bringing something new to the table, but “Sick!” hasn’t done that on previous records. The most experimental of the songs is “2010,” which features remixed piano notes manipulated to create a more airy and light sound out of it. 

The best song on “Sick!” is “God Laughs” it is the greatest example of silky smooth production. Earl comes with some of the best bars on this album. 

“Somethin’ reachin’ for me from the waist, These days I’m mindful of what I embrace, Operating on a empty tank, spank me”

To wrap up, “Sick!” is a glimmering beam of light in Earl’s discography. His lyrics and beats are becoming more optimistic, going from grimy dark beats to clearer jazz-influenced beats.


Favorite songs: “God Laughs,” “Titanic,” “Vision.”

Least favorite song: “Sick!”