Croydon's intricate-lyricist talks about his debut EP alongside Beau Peep 'Everything is Temporary', his Caravaggio inspired SoundCloud releases and creating visuals for his latest project.
As this is my first project, the process has been very educational for me. At times there has been mad efficiency but at others I've had to be patient. I'm always tryna learn the rules of the game as I go along so that I can develop my skills in every aspect of being a musician including the business and organisation side of things.
What were the main concepts or narratives that you wanted to delve into on ‘Everything is Temporary’?
I spoke a lot on my own experiences with mental health issues, struggles I've been through in my life and just general concerns that I have. At the same time I tried to let the funnier side of my personality shine through into the music because I have to stay true to every element of myself. The aim was to spit something real to me so that people who are similar to me have suttin to relate to in a music industry where a lot of people tell lies in their songs.
"In my opinion, the cover art is as important as the music."
Sonically, what sound did you want to go with on the project and how was the journey in finding that sound?
Most of the beats reminded me of being alone in my room feeling unmotivated, lonely and tired. I felt they encapsulate some of the different elements to being depressed. I gotta give credit to Beau for them tho, the first time I heard the beat pack he sent, I was ready to write to them.
What was the inspiration for the artwork and who did you work with in creating it?
I have to give full credit to Tarah Kandial for the art. I told her the kinda concept I had for the project and she came back with this masterpiece.
What was the inspiration for your 2019 single ‘Sun & Sea’?
Wasn't really any profound inspiration for that song, I just wrote my experiences of living life, making music, and spoke about some of my aspirations.
"I don't think it's for me to decide what people take away from the music, I just hope the ones that do relate to it..."
Lyrically, who inspires you and what do you want your listeners to take away from your lyrics?
People like MF DOOM, earl sweatshirt, Tommy Evans, Jehst and Roc Marciano, just to name a few. I don't think it's for me to decide what people take away from the music, I just hope the ones that do relate to it or find some similarity in their life can enjoy listening to it.
Going back to your earlier SoundCloud releases, how do you feel your sound has grown or changed since then?
I think I'm better at articulating myself in a more poetic way and also learned to work with a lot more flows and beat styles.
What was the inspiration for using the classical and old-jazz samples?
I just like old soulful and jazzy music. Gotta pay homage to what our forefathers gave to us.
What influenced you to use Caravaggio paintings as your single artworks and how important are visuals to you?
In my opinion, the cover art is as important as the music. I have such a love for the creative arts that I would feel that I'm not presenting my true self if the cover art/ visuals ain't on point. Caravaggio is one of the greatest artists to exist and I'm tryna reach those echelons one day so I thought it was fitting.
"...my own life experiences and seeing the lives of the people around me inspire me more than any artist nowadays."
As someone who has been active on the underground scene for a while, who are some local artists you would recommend?
Which artists inspired you to get into music and who is inspiring you today?
Dr Dre, Busta Rhymes, Wu Tang Clan, Devin the dude and people like that kinda inspired me to get into rap, but my own life experiences and seeing the lives of the people around me inspire me more than any artist nowadays.
If you had to recommend five artists for your listeners, who would they be?
What's coming up for the rest of 2020?
Could have two more projects out by the end of the year but you never know how long these things will take, really.