NEXT UP: Phundo Art
Phundo Art is a 24 year old rapper from South Africa, who has been living in the UK since 2003. He has been making music for several years now, but as of late he has developed his sound to a level which is unavoidable and deserves serious recognition. He rolls with 'the fam' known as BNG which consists of a number of creatives who all work on their own art forms. Not only is Phundo a musician, but he is a creative in many aspects. He can model, he can direct videos, he can rap. A visionary in his own right and this is destined to take him to the top.
Summer Vibes EP
Last night Phundo unexpectedly released a 5 track EP entitled 'Summer Vibes'. This has been an 'unlabelled' project which has been in the pipeline for some time now but after a trip to London the South African creative decided it was time to get it wrapped up and out there for the people. Phundo's diversity allows him to explore a variety of avenues with his sound, and can produce a sound suitable for a wide range of audiences, which is exactly what 'Summer Vibes' is all about.
Summer Vibes was initially meant to be named ‘Revenge’ but after considering his choices he felt it was too dark for the time of year. This is a project which needs to be digested and appreciated from start to finish. Previously Phundo had released the 'BNG Tape' which was well received by the audience but he feels that there are loop holes and due to so many directions being explored from, subtle and poetic… to hype and jump up…and then there are tracks which are more relaxed and possess a more ‘long drive’ feel. The art needs to be expanded on and focused on with more time in order for it to reach its full potential. The EP was made with the obvious intention to give a summer vibe, a short 5 track EP which Phundo described as 'short and sweet’ just like a British summer. The loud production of this production gives it a dark feel meaning that you can not only catch a positive vibe and bump it throughout summer but a piece of art which will remain popular as we carry it into Winter.
Phundo's latest project has been written and worked on for sometime, first developed through a very rough sound with beats being played and recorded on his phone as a voice note which allowed him to find his flow and write his lyrics for the tracks. Amandla was the main single, and his Russian plug, Rust Cole, produced all of the beats, except for the intro which is from Andre Hutchinson.
In my opinion, from start to finish the EP takes you on a journey, and for me reaches it's complex on 'Denim' when he flows with Jinx Touchwood, from that point on we receive Amandla, and Revenge which are very well produced tracks which Phundo bodies. After conversating with Phundo Art I feel that this level of work will keep being produced and will only get better from here. He's on the up and he's not stopping any time soon.
Recently he took a trip to London to link up with fellow MC, Cosmo, and despite Summer Vibes being worked on as an unlabelled project he says after returning from the capital he felt inspired to get the project complete and Cosmo and their peers provided Phunds with the energy that he needed. The trip gave him time to take a breather from the mad year he has had this far and felt he was pointed in the right direction and felt ready to get the project complete.
This year Phundo has worked on a number of things. As we discussed briefly earlier, he dropped the 'BNG Tape', and has released a number of heavy tracks which have been well received amongst a variety of audiences. Uzzi/Lord Sl8a, Wasabi, Reefers and more recently Amandla have been the tracks which have been making a lot of noise, and it is only a matter of time before people start to jump on the hype.
Phundo Art - Amandla
His reason to travel to London was that he was invited to the SBTV cookout and the vibe and energy he got from his time there he decided to extend his trip and link up with Cosmo and see how things work in the capital. With being from the Midlands this was a sick opportunity for him to expand his knowledge and analyse how things operate elsewhere in the UK. Recently he spoke to me about how their is a sea of creatives there and being from the West Midlands it is a very tight circle, and with the underground hip-hop/trap circle which he moves in there is a good vibe amongst his peers, but Phundo’s style steers away from what is commonly listened to across the UK which is heavily influenced by Grime, and his style of spitting is not similar to what is heavily appreciated in Birmingham or the UK in general. He stated that it is pretty difficult to break through with such a unique sound, but his network is strong and he will reach his goals in good time. In the pipeline for Phundo there is the promise of work with MC’s such as Cosmo, Shizz McNaughty, Kamikaze and a few more reputable names. It seems that he has built some strong links in London, and other areas within the UK and I look forward to hearing the link ups that are lined up.
Phundo is definitely one of the hardest working rappers I've come across and with such a diverse and unique sound it is refreshing to hear such powerful pieces of art. The future looks bright for the 24 year old and I can't wait to see what he has in stall for the remainder of this year.