Earl Sweatshirt wasn’t the first rapper to blow minds before being able to cast a ballot—nearly 30 years ago LL Cool J was rocking bells at 17, and even he was far from the first—but few of any age have written songs as remarkable as “Earl,” a two-minute-and-thirty-second mission statement dense with internal rhymes and high school vulgarity. Three years later, Sweatshirt can vote but not drink, and the rest of the world continues waiting for his sure-to-be-hype second album. Tonight he headlines a Downtown Music Festival show featuring sets from Ryan Hemsworth, the Main Attrakionz producer who has been remixing everyone from the Backstreet Boys to spaced-out dance producer Monolithium, and Antwon, a rapper with a strong voice and an ear for beats.
Fri., May 10, 8 p.m., 2013
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