Tyler, the Creator is a rapper who spent years building his career by being divisive. His debut releases, Bastard and Goblin, both of which came out before he even turned 21, quickly garnered worldwide attention due to their deliberate juxtapositions of misanthropic, bleak lyrics and carefree youthfulness. Each record possessed a carefully crafted inaccessibility, making them difficult to navigate for outsiders, but fascinating, even compelling, for dedicated listeners. Every record (and subsequent music video and live TV performance) rightfully increased his popularity, leading to a devout fanbase and youth-icon status. Perhaps unsurprisingly, all of the intensified attention Tyler received spawned a multitude of polarizing opinions from onlookers, ranging from total admiration to unfiltered disgust. Six years after Goblin, Tyler released his newest and most vulnerable record, Flower Boy, in 2017. On it, Tyler took the themes he somewhat shallowly explored earlier, such as unrequited love and anxiety, and pushed them to the forefront with admirable courage. Flower Boy
(alternatively titled Scum Fuck Flower Boy), in all of its glory and downright beauty, by no means suggests that Tyler has forgotten who he once was, but instead provides insights into the artist he is evolving into.
with Vince Staples, Taco | 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 13 | Orlando Amphitheater, Central Florida Fairgrounds, 4603 W. Colonial Drive | 407-295-3247 | orlandoamphitheater.com