“I was in the fucking pits for like 10 months post my pops dying,” Earl Sweatshirt tells Apple Music. Then he read about the origins of the phrase “feet of clay,” which he first heard in passing from his mom, and which felt like apt description of the apprehension he’d battled while attempting to make music after his father’s death in 2018. “That shit is from the Book of Daniel, and the feet of clay were at the bottom of an idol that the king of Babylon had a dream about,” he says. “And the statue was supposed to represent all the empires of the world, like chronologically. We find ourselves right now going onto that joint. We at the feet of clay right now. It's a crumbling empire. Which felt very fitting. We posted up live from burning Rome.” The EP comes out less than a year after Some Rap Songs, which itself came three years after I Don’t Like S**t, I Don’t Go Outside: An Album by Earl Sweatshirt. Here, he talks through each of FEET OF CLAY's seven tracks.
74 “I'm still on this brevity pack, so I like sitting down to play people this and having it be the first one, because it's just like...we doing it. We here to listen to these raps. It’s going up. I recorded that when there was a little break in between tours. I was just wolfing in my living room.”
EAST “This one is real as hell. There's very visceral memories and moments on that joint: 'Ahki hit the horn and beep/Mention my sentence strong, we all that we need/But don't call me brother no more.' Them was real-life revelations in the back of a fucking cab.”
MTOMB “A lot of this shit is real as hell: ‘Braids brought out my eyes’—I used to get braids when I was little. ‘I saw a light, I was nine/Told my n*gga Miles we might gon’ be all right, guess I was right.’ He’ll tell you, when we was around that age, we was chilling in my fucking room, I was like, ‘I don't know what, but I know when we 18, I'm going to have an apartment and I'm going to be smoking in that mothafucka.’ And then lo and behold, I looked up, and me and this n*gga Miles was in my apartment when I was 18, smoking in that mothafucka! It wasn't no furniture, it wasn't shit in there, but we was in the apartment, smoking in that mothafucka.”
OD “‘OD’ is one of my favorite joints. That was one of the ones that brought me up out of my little wreck. I was writing that joint the last time I was in South Africa, and then when I got home I made that beat, when I was out in LA. I was writing to a couple different beats. But I knew what I wanted.”
EL TORO COMBO MEAL (feat. Mavi) “That song did itself. I woke up, I sent my n*gga Mavi my part on it, because Overcast sent us both the same beat. So I sent my shit to Mavi like, ‘Yo, listen to this shit,’ ’cause we just be trading music all the time. And then Mavi sent me back what he did on it, and then because we not some weirdo rap n*ggas, it just made one song.”
TISK TISK / COOKIES “This is the oldest joint on there. I made ‘COOKIES’ and ‘TISK TISK’ and another song that's not on the album all in one little sitting. The transition [from 'TISK TISK' to 'COOKIES'] was cool, and also it just makes the joint make sense. The math is there. Like, 'tisk tisk,' run for your life. Shit be making itself sometimes.”
4N (feat. Mach-Hommy) “Mach, man…n*ggas know who Mach-Hommy is now. It’s not a secret anymore, you know what’s going on. For a long time I just felt like shit about my verse. Then I was like, you know what? This joint kind of go crazy.”
MTOMB (feat. Liv.E)
EL TORO COMBO MEAL (feat. Mavi)
TISK TISK / COOKIES
4N (feat. Mach-Hommy)
7 SONGS, 15 MINUTES
NOVEMBER 1, 2019
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