If Flower Boy was Tyler, the Creator’s big musical pivot, IGOR is him hitting his post-rap stride. The album is decorated with soulful production built around centerpiece melodies, helium-voice crooning and sonic heartbreak & revenge.
Like his past albums, IGOR is titled after a character who comes alive throughout the album. Here, IGOR is confused and desperate as he tries to win over the full attention of his elusive lover. When he fails to do so, he resorts to violence as his immediate coping mechanism, and when his rage fades he goes back to being sentimental again. The character arc is beautiful in the way it captures IGOR’s volatile journey.
So, is IGOR a stage in the evolving life cycle of Bastard, Goblin, Wolf, and Flower Boy – or an entirely different creation? It’s up to your interpretation, but it’s probably a bit of both.
It’s also worth noting a bit of irony involved with Tyler’s introduction of IGOR. In an Instagram post prefacing the album drop, Tyler implored his fans to approach the album with open minds: “don’t go into this expecting any album.” He doesn’t want you to be distracted either – he wants you to let yourself fully indulge in the listening experience from front to back. Whereas earlier OFWGKTA albums were the epitome of punk rebellion, for IGOR, Tyler politely asks fans to follow some loose listening rules. As his music matures and becomes more sophisticated, he wants his audience to appreciate and respect his new direction.
Free from needing shock value to make a splash, Tyler can just make music now, and it’s led to back-to-back incredibly cohesive and daring albums. 🍑