Social media has changed the way we interact with our favourite artists. More than just musicians, they’re now personalities, people we can interact with on the daily. Now more than ever we’re aware that musicians are pretty normal people, they just have a weird job. Every week we get to know one of our favourite SoundCloud heroes, internet dating style, in our new column, Internet Crush.
Trap comes in many forms these days. Where once artists like Waka Flocka Flame were the template; aggressive and in your face, the genre has opened up in recent years and the xaned-out dreams of Travis Scott and Future have made for more emotional and expressive trap music. GASHI belongs to this new school, born in Libya to Albanian parents and but raised in Brooklyn he’s a rapper with more death than first meets the eye.
Like Flocka, his vocal style is aggressive, his choice of beats bombastic and his visuals fit the template, grills, sunglasses and stunting like there’s no tomorrow, however, listen to the lyrics and there are moments of real rawness. On the hook recent single ‘Used To Be’ he screams “every night I pop another pill to sleep / they keep saying there ain’t nothing wrong with me”, it’s delivered like a brag, devoid of emotion thanks to the autotune laid over the top but it betrays an emotional honesty that crops up again and again in GASHI’s work.
Today he drops new single ‘1134’, a lower-key, moody cut that takes trap’s penchant for autotune and dials it up to almost Bon Iver levels. In honour of the release, we got to know GASHI for this week’s Internet Crush.
Where’s the best place in Brooklyn for a date?
L&B’s.It’s the best square slice that you can get.
Whose the greatest Albanian musician of all time?
My mother because she’s Albanian and she can sing, so if it ain’t me it’s my mother.
What drew you to hip-hop?
DMX, Jay Z, Eminem, Nas, Biggie. Michael Jackson is not a hip hop artist but I always wanted to be like him.
Who do you roll with?
My family, my Roc Nation management team, & Jamal Budd.
Describe your sound in just a sentence:
I am the Phil Collins of trap, my music is very emotional.
Black – it makes me look skinny.
Gladiator, A Bronx Tale, Paid In Full, Juice, Home Alone 2, Good Fellas, Scarface.
What’s your star sign?
I’m a Libra, and my sign is a scale, and if it doesn’t measure up, then somebody gettin’ killed – Lil Wayne.
Have you ever been in love?
Yes, I’ve been in love once and I still write songs about it. She broke my fucking heart.
Have you ever had your heartbroken?
Multiple times and I am still heartbroken.
How do you deal with a broken heart?
I make songs about my broken heart.
Last book you read:
Nov York – my cousin gave it to me shortly before he passed. The book was dope and it always reminds me of my cousin.
First single/album you ever bought?
DMX – and then there was X. He is my favourite rapper of all time.
First band/act you ever went to see live?
Kanye West, Glow In The Dark Tour I snuck into the show.
Getting hit by a car in Lybia, it made me realize that life is precious, that’s why I am always so woke. Losing my virginity, I wish I was a virgin again.
What do you do in your spare time?
Talk to my parents as much as possible, they are my best friends.
Are you a morning or evening person?
Both. I am an all day person, I am just happy to have a day. I don’t like sleeping, I am scared to sleep.
First song you ever wrote?
I wrote a song on garage band over a Kid Cudi beat.
Favorite song of your own?
‘Rose Gold’, because it was the first song I freestyled from front to back.
Favorite lyric of yours?
“For these euros like Biggie, I am always looking overseas.” Because like Biggie I look to my family, the way he did for Lil Cease. Also, I’m from Brooklyn.
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