Yung Lean

Grab your bucket hats and AriZona Iced Teas, Yung Lean is bringing his Sad Boys crew to San Francisco tomorrow. The young Swedish rapper-turned Internet sensation will perform a sold out show at The Independent this Saturday night as part of his U.S. debut, a limited string of dates dubbed the Black Marble Tour. With many of this month’s earlier shows in New York and Canada quickly selling out, West Coast fans and skeptics will finally have the opportunity to settle the score on whether the act’s appeal relies on true talent, or pure hype.

Yung Lean’s latest singles “Kyoto” and “Yoshi City” definitely point to the former, with his uniquely AutoTuned vocal style flowing over Yung Gud’s cloudy beats. While “sad rap” has already become its own micro-genre, the currently trending style draws close parallels to locally affiliated “cloud rap” artists such as Lil B, Main Attrakionz, and Friendzone–who produced Yung Lean’s “Solarflare” for his Unknown Death 2000 mixtape. Unknown Memory is due later this year.

Yung Lean’s real name is Jonatan Leandoer Håstad. Today is his eighteenth birthday. Technically he isn’t even allowed to get into his own show, which is 21+. There’s no official roster for his Sad Boys crew, but will likely include producers Yung Gud and Yung Sherman, and possibly Gravity Boys member and collaborator Bladee. New York experimentalist James Ferraro will DJ the event.

Yung Lean’s U.S. fans have been waiting a long time to experience Sweden’s Sad Boys movement first hand. While the Black Marble Tour will inevitably help dictate the fate of Yung Lean’s international success one way or another, it doesn’t look like the Sad Boys are going away anytime soon.

Yung Lean & Sadboys, Goth Money Records / black Kray & MFK, DJ James Ferraro
The Independent
July 19, 2014
9pm, $16 (SOLD OUT)