Lil Peep: how to handle the release of an album shrouded in tragedy

At an intimate listening party, the final album from the rapper who died last year was unveiled with family and friends explaining how they ensured it would honour his legacy

“This album is important because Gus is dead,” said Liza Womack, Lil Peep’s mom, when presenting his second album Come Over When You’re Sober Pt 2 to friends, colleagues and other supporters at a listening party in New York. “But it’s the album he’d have made if he were alive,” she added, in a nod to a larger conversation around the ethics of posthumous releases.

Rapper Lil Peep, born Gustav Åhr, was seen as a pioneer of emo rap with honest outpourings and samples of mid-2000s music. He died unexpectedly last November of an accidental fentanyl-xanax overdose, leaving behind work, both unfinished and completed, which his mother has been releasing. Come Over When You’re Sober Pt 2, the follow-up to his 2017 debut album Come Over When You’re Sober, was always intended to be heard. And with the hard work of his mom and Columbia Records, it’s finally going to see the light of day.

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