Boots Riley has just gone through one of the most fascinating, heartening reinventions that we’ve seen in American public life in recent years. For decades, Riley was a Bay Area community organizer and the central rapper in the Coup, the long-running, criminally underappreciated, politically driven Oakland rap group. But now, Riley is a major auteur. His debut film Sorry To Bother You, which he wrote and directed, might be the most acclaimed movie of the summer. (I haven’t seen it yet, but I can’t wait.) But Riley hasn’t stopped making music. In fact, he’s got a whole new album out today.
Back in 2012, when Riley was first writing the movie, the Coup released an album called Sorry To Bother You. Now they’ve followed it up with another album called Sorry To Bother You: The Soundtrack. This one is the actual soundtrack to the movie, which means Riley’s got the characters in his movie listening to his own music. He’s already said that it might be the most-heard album of the Coup’s career, which is fun to think about.
And it’s a good album! The new Sorry To Bother You is hard, squelchy funk-rap with live instrumentation and more guitar riffage than you might expect. We’ve already posted first single “OYAHYTT,” which features a shockingly capable verse from Lakeith Stanfield, the movie’s star. The album also features guest appearances from Janelle Monaé, Killer Mike, E-40, and Tune-Yards. Stream the whole thing below.
Sorry To Bother You: The Soundtrack is out now on Interscope.