The murder earlier this year of Pop Smoke, the self-proclaimed king of New York, was a huge blow to the city’s blossoming drill scene. His monster hits Welcome to the Party and Dior helped build a musical bridge between the UK and NYC, forging an important bond within a genre often demonised by the authorities on both sides of the Atlantic.
Luckily Fivio Foreign, a feature on Smoke’s final Meet the Woo 2 mixtape, is stepping up as the scene’s new vanguard.
The 24-year-old rapper first turned heads last year with Big Drip, the track’s stirring drum patterns and whirling basslines earning the MC a knee-slapping 75 millions YouTube views. It also caught the attention of major industry players, notably Columbia Records – who scooped up the rapper in a seven-figure deal last October – and Drake, who tapped Fivio Foreign for an upcoming collaboration that was teased back in February.
Now the Brooklynite returns with Wetty, a boisterous cut from his debut mixtape 800 B.C, out 24th April. Catch it below before getting the 100% down-low.
10%: Where were you born, where were you raised and where are you now based?
I was born in Brookdale, New York. I was raised in Brooklyn in the ’90s but I was back and forth between Harlem ’cause my cousin was there.
20%: At what point did you realise you’d be able to do what you love for a living?
Once people started giving me shit for free because I rap, I was like: “Oh shit, I could probably make a living off this shit.”
30%: What piece of advice changed your life?
I give my own self advice. I figured this thing out. I feel like nobody can really tell me what they did. The advice I would give somebody is just keep going with that shit. Don’t try to be like everybody else.
40%: What emotions and experiences influence your work?
I lost everything: my mum died, I lost all the shit in my crib, all that stuff. I had to go hard. I feel like whatever I did, I was going to go hard with it. Whatever you’re doing, go hard with that shit.
50%: What can you tell us about your next project?
It’s going viral. But the mixtape is only leading up to the album, and the album is the bible.
60%: Break down your typical day at work.
A typical day at the studio I’d probably be drinking and smoking – there’s a lot of smoke in the air – loud music, focus … we’re just going viral.
70%: What can artists do to help save the world?
Right now, [during] corona, they just gotta stay in the house.
80%: Love, like, hate?
I love the pain that I went through because it made me who I am. I like a good vibe – right now, I could give myself anything I want, so the only thing that somebody could offer me is a good vibe. I hate when people call my phone about shit they could have text me about. To me it’s a waste of time – I got mad shit to do.
90%: How did you celebrate your last birthday?
I was just in the crib ’cause of corona. My birthday just passed, it was on March 29th.
100%: Number One holiday destination?