For decades, Boots Riley has split his time between local Oakland activism and leading the politically charged, party-starting funk-rap group the Coup. But these days, he’s mostly being talked about in terms of his skill as a filmmaker. His directorial debut Sorry To Bother You, which premiered earlier this year at Sundance and hit theaters last week, is one of the most buzzed-about movies of the summer, an absolutely wild burst of colorfully absurdist seriocomic energy.
The movie shares a name with the Coup’s most recent album, and alongside a score from Tune-Yards, it’s jam-packed full of their music. The Soundtrack To Sorry To Bother You, an album of new music from the Coup that is, somewhat confusingly, a totally distinct entity from their 2012 album Sorry To Bother You, is on the way. It features collaborations with Janelle Monáe, Killer Mike, E-40, Tune-Yards, and Jolie Holland, and today they’ve shared first single “OYAHYTT.”
Like the film itself, “OYAHYTT” is full of energy, a stomping, kinetic track propelled by distorted guitar and horns. The acronym in the title stands for “Oh Yeah, Alright, Hell Yeah, That’s Tight,” the chant that runs through the song, and Atlanta’s Lakeith Stanfield, who plays the protagonist of the movie, raps a verse. Listen to it below.
Sorry To Bother You, which also stars Tessa Thompson, Jermaine Fowler, Steven Yeun, and Armie Hammer, starts out as the story of a black man who discovers he can succeed at telemarketing by using a “white voice” (provided by David Cross). It ends up in some truly bizarre places that I won’t spoil here. It’s worth seeing.