Recently announced member of 2016’s Listen Out lineup, and Swedish rapper, Yung Lean turns 20 today. Yep, let that sink in, only 20. With three full-length albums already under his belt, as well as hordes of devoted fans subscribing to Lean’s ‘Sad Boy’ movement, Yung Lean has already achieved at 20 years old what most people could only ever dream of achieving. Also included in Calvin Klein’s most recent advertising campaign, Yung Lean can also boast being a style icon on his lengthy, extensive resume.
Much like his music, Yung Lean’s approach to style often defies societal and cultural norms, lending more to Leandoer’s own personal preferences as opposed to present and ongoing trends. At various times, Lean’s style resembles closely the ‘normcore’ movement which had a brief position of prominence in popular style recently, with the Swedish rapper being found to frequently wear neutral toned polo shirts, ‘off-brand’ button-downs and tracksuit pants when performing or seen out and about.
Of course, again like Lean’s approach to his music, the 20 year old’s style is never seen to stray away entirely from exploring the more eccentric and daring sides to the artist’s imagination, finding use of prints (such as ‘flame’ print, a favourite of the Sad Boys), bright colours, and unique silhouettes to accentuate the divisive artist’s unique presence.
A child of the late-90s, Yung Lean also often incorporates influences of 2000s culture in his style, both musically and in terms of his fashion output, with the presence of such ’00s images as Pokémon and obscure, vintage references making their way in to Lean’s day to day.
And, of course, let’s not forget the classic image of Yung Lean wearing a dress for the video to ‘Miami Ultras’, taken from Lean’s Warlord album released earlier this year, further exemplifying Lean’s careless defiance of ‘norms’ and embrace of experimentation in terms of both his sound and approach to fashion.
Yung Lean also recently started his own line of Sad Boys clothing, combining minimalist elements owing to Lean’s Scandinavian upbringing with cultural references and images owing to the generational influences Lean frequently features in his music. All in all, Lean’s approach to style is precisely the same as his approach to music and to art, embracing all elements of the artist’s own personality and defying cultural, societal pressures and norms to create his own trend.
Is it any wonder the Sad Boys movement continues to grow? Happy birthday, Yung Lean!
A photo posted by @yunglean2001 on
- Words: James Schofield