November 21, 2017
by Domenic Casciato
On the night of Nov. 15, Gustav Åhr, known by his stage name Lil Peep, was found dead inside his tour bus outside of a venue in Tucson, Arizona. He was set to perform in the second to last stop on his Come Over When You’re Sober tour, a 68-day tour spanning Europe and North America. First responders reported he appeared to have been killed by a Xanax overdose, but online forums quickly ignited with the rumour that Peep had been sold drugs laced with fentanyl, a powerful–and often deadly–opioid. Anyone familiar with Peep’s music was aware of his struggles with drug dependency, but the too-early death of the 21-year-old rapper was nonetheless disturbing and shocking for his fans across the world.
In the few years since Peep rose to prominence, he cultivated a deeply loyal, passionate fan base, and left a lasting impression on rap music. Largely credited by critics and fans alike as the pioneer of emo-influenced rap, Lil Peep was able to achieve a seemingly contradictory blend of modern trap machismo and early-90s alt-rock sappiness in hits like “Star Shopping” and “Crybaby.” Peep’s signature sound—angsty guitar strumming, rumbling 808 bass, trap-style drums, and remarkably catchy hooks—has been emulated by a long list of mainstream artists, including…