Listen: Tyler, The Creator's Grinch-Inspired EP Is No Christmas Wrap : All Songs Considered While inspired by his work scoring the new 'Grinch' film, this is no novelty release. Instead, the largely instrumental project feels like bonus songs from last year's Flower Boy.
NPR logo Listen: Tyler, The Creator's Grinch-Inspired EP Is No Christmas Wrap

Listen: Tyler, The Creator's Grinch-Inspired EP Is No Christmas Wrap

Tyler, the Creator attends the premiere of "Dr. Seuss' The Grinch" at Alice Tully Hall on November 3, 2018 in New York City. Angela Weiss/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Angela Weiss/AFP/Getty Images

It's been little more than a year since Tyler, the Creator emerged fully formed from post-adolescence to deliver a surprisingly mature quarter-life crisis LP. But if 2017's Flower Boy left fans wondering whether the young visionary Odd Future was losing touch with his inner child, fear not. Just in time for the holidays, he's returned like Secret Santa with a bag of unexpected goodies.

The newly released Music Inspired by Illumination & Dr. Seuss' The Grinch is a six-song EP of new music, leftover from Tyler's work on the soundtrack for a recently released animated redux of Dr. Seuss' The Grinch. While he contributed two songs to the soundtrack — including a remake of "You're A Mean One, Mr. Grinch" (with composer Danny Elfman), and Tyler's own "I Am The Grinch" — the new EP, includes all originals.

This isn't novelty, Christmas rap. Instead, the largely instrumental project feels like bonus songs from Flower Boy. He even throws in a couple of stocking stuffers: "Lights On" features Santigold and Ryan Beatty singing over a nostalgic track full of '80s synths, while "Big Bag" finds Tyler deep in his own bag reminiscing over Christmas as a child before assuming the role of the Grinch himself: "I'm about as low as self-esteem when I creep in / Boy / Don't make noise my feet thin / I'm / Looking for the paper same color my green skin."

Even when Tyler's being naughty, it sounds kinda nice.