Odd Future’s meteoric blog-fueled rise was fast, probably too fast. Eventually things slowed down as the shock wore off, leaving a group of kids grappling to find themselves as musicians maybe before they had time to fully develop. Fast forward a year or two of critical backlash and the group is releasing The OF Tape Vol. 2, nothing ground breaking but a refreshing reminder of why the group got where they are in the first place.
The release is an-hour long cross section of where the OF crew stands as of 2012, a marked improvement over where everyone came from. Although the 18 track release features contributions from all the core members and could be sneered at for a lack of cohesion, it’s this diversity that ultimately makes it an enjoyable listen. Before a couple tracks, “Bitches” and “NY (Ned Flander)”, from Domo, Hodgy and Tyler has a chance to get draining like portions of Goblin. The Internet steps in with the sonically cleansing N.E.R.D. influenced “Ya Know” followed by laid-back blunted rhymes from Mike G on “Forest Green”.
The OF Tape Vol. 2 is a carefree tour of all the positive traits that made Odd Future so enjoyable to begin with. The tape isn’t without its moments of outright ridiculousness, notably Mellowhype and Taco with “Real Bitch” and Tyler’s “We Got Bitches”, but that comes with the territory at this point. Aside from a few instances everyone is on top of their game, taking advantage of their individual moments to shine. Tyler is still Tyler, Jerry Sandusky references and all. Hodgy and Domo are as sharp as they’ve ever been, taking over a majority of the tape while Frank Ocean, Mike G, and Syd all take full advantage of their appearances.
The OF Tape Vol. 2 culminates in the 10-minute all-inclusive posse cut “Oldie” featuring everyone from Tyler, Hodgy and Frank Ocean to the triumphant return of Earl who still remains the group’s most skilled and intriguing rapper. Starting with The OF Tape, Vol. 2 things are looking good for the LA skaters turned stars; everyone has improved significantly, they each have their own lane to explore, and Earl is back. After the sudden backlash of 2011, OFWGKTA is set to have a great few years if they explore the successes of The OF Tape Vol 2.