Black Butter / UK
Everyone is talking about Octavian. With one foot in Grime and the other in the spaciest reaches of the rap world, this young French born, London based artist has quickly found his own sound, impossible to categorise but unquestionably unique. His lyrics, mature, reflective but honed in the streets, convey the worldly nature of a man who at 21 years of age has been through the death of his father, a cultural uprooting (from France to Camberwell) and the contradictory peaks of attending two years on a scholarship to London's private Brit School, followed by long stretches sleeping between friends sofas and the street.
Perhaps it's due to these conflicting experiences that his tracks startle for their open minded approach to genre: drawing on spacey synths and hard edged trap beats, before veering into house or techno breakdowns. This virtuosity is on display in his early hits - Party Here (with more than a million views on youtube), 100 Degrees or Little - as well as across his two mixtapes to date: Essie World and Spaceman, both of which were critically lauded for their intelligence, authenticity, range and profound sense of rhythm.