“The Mint” is the second single dropped ahead of Earl Sweatshirt’s third record Some Rap Songs. It has been a long break for the twenty-four-year-old artist, whose last LP came out in 2015 (I Don’t Like Shit, I Don’t Go Outside).

Earl Sweatshirt’s last single was “Nowhere2go,” a disorientating, bold and expansive track that dropped two weeks ago. Now, ahead of his album’s November 30 release date, we’ve been gifted another surprise teaser, “The Mint” – and this time the sound is far more understated.

Though concrete information about Some Rap Songs remains few and far between, the difference in tone between “Nowhere2go” and “The Mint” sets the scene for an LP that is unlikely to stick to a single formula. Indeed, it comes at the end of a tumultuous year for Sweatshirt, who has said he wants the album to reflect his personal and professional growth.

In press releases and interviews, he has alluded to himself as a “surviving child star,” who is just managing to emerge from the drink and drug-fuelled environment he became engaged in at too young an age. This sentiment took on an extra weight in September when Mac Miller, his long-term friend and collaborator, tragically passed away. What’s more, Sweatshirt’s father also passed in January, removing the opportunity for them to reunite for a “long-anticipated conversation.”

Therefore, the upcoming fifteen-track album pictures an artist coming to terms with lots of things at once. But the album’s deadpan title is a clue as to how he will go about it. Sweatshirt’s style has often been more about underplay than full-scale dramatisation after all. You suspect that any catharsis or closure will be found between the beats and embedded deep in the lyrics. “The Mint” features production by Black Noi$e and the New York rapper Navy Blue. Listen to it now.


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