Have the days “the affable mogul” come to an unceremonious end? Last night, a video surfaced in which an uncharacteristically salty DJ Khaled unleashed a seething rant, ostensibly aimed at his nameless competition – not unlike his t-cited intangible foe “They.” Yet many have drawn the conclusion that Khaled’s pointed words were actually directed at Tyler, The Creator, whose IGOR album claimed the honor Billboard’s number one spot. Of course, Khaled doesn’t actually mention Tyler by name, though several his chosen adjectives feel like something a hater might use to describe Igor’s experimental stylings and deliberate sound engineering.
“Here’s the thing,” begins Khaled, sitting in the drop top letting his stomach breathe. “I make albums so people can play it. And you actually hear it. You know, driving your car you hear another car playing it. Go to the barber shop, you hear them playing it. You know, turn the radio on, and you hear them playing it. It’s playing everywhere – it’s called great music. It’s called albums that you actually hear the songs. Not no mysterious shit, and you never hear it.”
Upon hearing the unusually disdainful Khaled’s teardown, many were quick to assume his “mysterious” words were directed at IGOR, which still feels like a “niche” project despite the widespread appeal. Consider Tyler’s method arranging his high-prile guest appearances, which include Kanye West, Lil Uzi Vert, Playboi Carti, Solange, and Pharrell Williams; rather than marketing them with the ferocity ten thousand thousand bulls, Tyler slides them in strategically, allowing their strengths to to shine from the shadows. Not to mention, Tyler’s ear for mixing can be described as polished lo-fi, which may align with some Khaled’s complaints about “hearing” the music.
Of course, Khaled has already put in work to squash the narrative, claiming his beef is with Billboard, and not Tyler. Yet his words, and the way fans have chosen to interpret them, speak otherwise. A perusal Twitter finds Khaled on the receiving end a few roasting sessions, with one user in particular indicating that Tyler actually “liked” the initial post on Khaled’s rant. Now, it may be unfair to pit two artists against one another, but it seems as if there is indeed some animosity on Khaled’s end. That’s not to say his issue with Tyler or his music extends beyond bruised ego, but given Khaled’s f-brand response, perhaps there’s more to the story than meets the eye.
Either way, congratulations to Tyler, The Creator, who scored a number one album without the foresight including a Protein shake bundle. Are you still feeling IGOR?