Ever since EarthGang emerged on the music scene in the early 2010s, fans and pundits compared the duo to the legendary rap group known as OutKast. Many people viewed Olu and WowGr8 as the rightful successors to fellow Atlanta natives André 3000 and Big Boi.
This week saw the arrival of EarthGang’s new single “Amen” with R&B singer Musiq Soulchild. Apple Music 1’s Zane Lowe spoke to Olu and WowGr8 about the song which took inspiration from a classic by UGK and OutKast.
“We watched the ‘International Player’s Anthem’ video before we started making this beat. Shoutout OutKast, UGK… it’s a total vibe, a total love for music and the energy,” said EarthGang.
EarthGang has stated that they listened to OutKast’s Big Boi and Andre 3000 while growing up in the Southwest Atlanta area. AllHipHop asked EarthGang about the Kast comparisons during a 2015 interview for the #ATLRiseUp series.
“Some people give that as a lazy comparison without going through the music. It’s two cats from Atlanta who really got some content, so we’re going to put them in the OutKast lane,” said Olu, aka Johnny Venus, at the time.
He added, “On the flip side of that, it’s still cool when your name is brought up – not on the same level – in relation to people that have done so many things. It’s motivating and ensures you’re on the right path. It’s not a glass ceiling. That’s not how I see it.”
While being founding members of the Spillage Village collective, EarthGang is also part of the Dreamville Records roster. Their 2019 album, Mirrorland, came out via J. Cole’s label. The former Hampton University students are now preparing to release Ghetto Gods on February 25.
“Essentially the concept is, there’s some god in all us, no matter what you believe it. You don’t have to be from a specific hood or area – it’s really about finding it in yourself from a young age,” EarthGang told Zane Lowe about Ghetto Gods.
EarthGang’s catalog already consists of 2013’s Shallow Graves for Toys and 2015’s Strays with Rabies. Plus, Spillage Village came together for multiple compilations. Olu and WowGr8 also contributed to Dreamville’s chart-topping Revenge of the Dreamers III.