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The following article contains and discusses content that may be distressing to some readers.
Reason for Warning: This page contains references to drugs and brief mentions of sex.

Lyfë
Playboi Carti - Whole Lotta Red

Opium, also known as Vamp, is a subgenre of streetwear with roots in the Avant-garde, Metal and Punk subcultures, gaining popularity in the early 2020s, attributed largely to the release of Playboi Carti's 'Whole Lotta Red' in December 2020, an experimental rage trap album exploring themes of a 'rockstar lifestyle'.

History[]

Vamp themes can be traced back to the likes of Spaceghostpurrp, debatably the first vamp rapper, but was popularized by Lil Tracy (aka Yung Bruh/souljawitch) in the late 2010s. The first large leap in popularity resulted from Playboi Carti's 'Whole Lotta Red,' which explored the 'punk' influence and leaned into a darker sound, with visual themes including gothic and Satanist imagery. Opium merges strong alternative influences with high fashion and avant-garde by the likes of brands such as Rick Owens, Balenciaga and Maison Margiela, as well as a heavy focus on drug usage, promiscuity, fame and money making. In the early 2020s, Ken Carson and Destroy Lonely, arguably two of the most notable figures, would see musical success and subsequently be signed to Playboi Carti's Music Label; 'Opium' closely followed by Homixide Gang (consisting of Homixide Beno and Meechie), derived from opiate usage as a theme. Their songs feature lyrical themes of drug use, crime, sex, money and fashion and a distorted, electronic sound. The largest jump in popularity of the aesthetic can be attributed to Destroy Lonely's 'If Looks Could Kill', a single which was leaked in 2022. 'If Looks Could Kill' going viral on TikTok made the Vamp look more of a household fashion statement.

Fashion[]

Opium fashion is a subgenre of streetwear and typically features an all or mostly black theme, high fashion and avant garde fashion. notable brands include: Rick Owens, Balenciaga, Maison Margiela, Chrome Hearts, Givenchy, Vetements, Raf Simons and ALYX. Clothes with distorted or exaggerated proportions are typical, with both extremely baggy and extremely slim silhouettes worn. Many shirts and hoodies feature ironic and sometimes distasteful or bizarre slogans, and leather or black denim pants and jackets. There are also many metal and punk influences such as studded belts, metallic/silver accents (e.g. silver chains, silver detailing), and influences of horrorcore imagery such as blood and skeletons.

Visuals[]

Common imagery is that of churches, pentagrams, bats, wolves, night time and darkness, black cats, blood, bones and skeletons.

Music[]

Music is punctuated by distorted, dark, gothic rage beats and erratic vocal deliveries featuring heavy autotune usage.

Playlists[]

A playlist with the entire Opium Label Artists discography right here.

(Playboi Carti, Ken Carson, Destroy Lonely, Homixide Gang)

Musical Artists[]

Notable musical artists include:

  • Playboi Carti
  • Destroy Lonely
  • Ken Carson
  • Homixide Gang
  • Yeat
  • Lancey Foux
  • Unotheactivist
  • Lil Uzi Vert
  • Lucis Shadez

Influential Artists[]

Musical influences include:

  • Black Kray (Sickboyrari)
  • Tread music
  • Deftones
  • Crystal Castles
  • Jeff Hardy
  • Michael Jackson

Notable songs include:

  • Fighting My Demons by Ken Carson
  • NOSTYLIST by Destroy Lonely
  • Vamp Anthem by Playboi Carti
  • Flawlëss by Yeat ft. Lil Uzi Vert
  • Miss The Rage by Playboi Carti and Trippie Redd
  • If Looks Could Kill by Destroy Lonely
  • Yale by Ken Carson

Gallery[]

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