As one of the biggest groups of the last couple of years, Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All (Odd Future, OFWGKTA, OF) has pissed off a lot of suburbs and made a lot of kids smile. That’s what they’re going for.
They have over 133,000,000 views on their YouTube channel, and their latest record, The OF Tape Vol. 2, debuted at number one on the Billboard hip-hop charts two weeks ago. The crew also has a new show on Adult Swim called “Loiter Squad” that debuted number one in its time slot.
And while there is a lot to be excited about, there’s also work to be done.
The OF crew can be up to 10 people deep, but not all were present at the Warfield on Monday. Tyler, the Creator lead the crew as usual, while Syd the Kyd stuck behind the tables and took the stage solo at the beginning of the show to hype the crowd with Waka Flocka Flame and others that would set a rowdy mood. Mosh pits were breaking out before the show had even really started.
Hodgy Beats and Left Brain then came out to warm the place up with Mellowhype, the two’s side project. From there Tyler, Domo Genesis, Mike G and Jasper Dolphin came out until the stage was filled with Los Angeles teens and pot smoke.
They burned through tracks like “Rella,” “Yonkers” and “50,” but also burned through all their energy the end of the two-hour set. Much of the time, members who weren’t active on the mic would aimlessly wander the stage or even just sit down.
It could have been the endless chain of blunts, the rookies’ fatigue, or the fact that they rap and jump up and down for multiple hours, but towards the end of the show even OF members were complaining that the show wasn’t over.
Another blatant screw-up was a complete flop in mixing during the middle of the set, which was blamed on “rah-rah the ghost whale.” While the energy was quickly recovered, it screamed “amateur.” This also came across when members would be completely lost on what song was coming next.
The crowd ate it up, though. Joints and bags of weed flew onto stage. Young bodies and shoes flew in the same direction. Mosh pits and stage dives were a common act, as was the crowd giving OF gifts like portraits and books. And it’s easy to point out mistakes in a live show, but the sheer amount of energy and chaos flying through the room made it acceptable, if not completely fitting.
Despite the ridiculous lyrics of often sexist and violent imagery, there is an honest connection with the fans. And with a closing chorus of “kill people, burn shit, fuck school,” it’s plainly speaking to the pissed-off skater kid inside. Odd Future just gets paid to be those kids.