Razor: from Reinventing to Progression
13 Nov 2012
Lucky me – my third interview with the amazing Razor in just a year! It’s no doubt that this boy has been a busy one; he’s released his third official mixtape (read my review of it here) and he’s been more active on the live show scene than ever, having recently opened for Krept and Konan and travelling out of the country (well, to Wales) just to perform live.
I caught up with Razor today and found out what’s been new with him, and what it feels like to have groupies 😉
Georgina: How was Progression an improvement on Reinventing?
Razor: I felt like Progression was me cementing myself on the UK rap scene. As I’ve pushed myself more as an artist I’ve become more confident. Certain life situations have made me have tunnel vision. Even though I’ve gone through certain things in my life, I’m still progressing as a person, still trying to be productive and not let anything get to me.
G: Would you say that the tracks on Progression are a reflection of the last year or so?
R: All the songs I put on there are for a good reason. They show what I’ve gone through. Reinventing was a bit too spiritual, kinda depressing. I talked about haters too much, in a depressing way too. It was getting to me. With Progression, the way I talk about haters or people trying to bring me down is in a way to show that it’s a part of me now. I just suck it up. With Reinventing, I was trying to find myself as an artist and as a person and to take the next step, and with Progression I feel like I’ve found myself and that I have taken that next step.
G: What’s your favourite track off Progression?
R: Oh my days! Um hang on I’ve got the tracklisting here [laughs] let me see. Maybe Into The Light.
G: That’s one of my favourites definitely!
R: Yeah that’s one of the best ones. Every time I work with Foz Tee, the chemistry is just so strong. He’ll lay down the beat and it kinda feels like he can give me the beat with the hook already on it and it’s like the song just writes itself. It’s already made. All I’ve gotta do is write some verses and the song will be a banger!
G: You talk about your ex-girlfriend’s miscarriages a lot throughout the mixtape. Was that a way of riding out the storm or venting it?
R: Before Foz Tee sent me the beat for Into The Light I had actually written the lyrics already, where I speak on my ex’s miscarriages. I had the lyrics written for a few weeks but I didn’t know what to do with them. When he sent me that tune it automatically clicked. It was just a way of writing about the situation really. I just tried to take care of her and support her really.
G: Did your relationship with her influence the mixtape? As I can tell you included songs from before, during and after the relationship on Progression.
R: The majority of the tracks were written while I was with her. Only two songs were written after we broke up – Bang Bang and Look What You’ve Done. It might sound bad but when we broke up I went through a bad time. I was dysfunctional. I couldn’t write and I didn’t want to write. I just felt down and depressed. With Look What You’ve Done I just needed to write that, to get it out there, if you know what I mean.
G: You have said before that you get stage fright. Have you improved in terms of confidence now?
R: I have definitely. I still get nervous – if I don’t get nervous then something’s wrong! But whilst I’m performing I’m wary of what people might think but I just kinda don’t care. I just do what I’ve set out to do. It’s natural for me to be nervous now but it’s not half as bad as it used to be.
G: What’s been your best reaction from a crowd so far?
R: I went to Cardiff a couple of weeks ago to open up for Krept and Konan, which was an under eighteens event, and after just one song everybody was just right in front of me in front of the stage really enjoying it. Then after the performance people kept coming up to me and were taking mixtapes, they wanted pictures taken with me and stuff, they started all following me on Twitter. Some of them said they’d pay money to come and see me again and that made me feel really special. I performed with Dretonio a couple of weeks ago and there were these girls asking to take pictures with us!
G: [laughs] you’ve got groupies now then!
R: [laughs] yeah, I suppose in Wales it’s kinda different coz they’re not used to rap as much as in London.
G: The next release is Free Soul, which you’re filming the video for on Sunday 18th November in Stratford. What was the inspiration behind that track?
R: I met Saffire [who features on the track] in Willesden Green and I was surprised at how sick she was when I checked out her stuff. We really liked each other’s mixtapes – she listened to Reinventing and I checked out all her stuff – I think she absolutely kills every track she sings on. I sent her about five beats and she put her chorus on Free Soul straight away. She came up with the concept and everything, and I knew that I wanted to work with Big Cakes [who also features on the track] so I sent him the track and I was actually surprised at how quickly he came back to me with his part. It all kinda fell together – not an accident, but it worked out well!
G: She has a really great voice, I love that track.
R: Yeah man she does. It was funny how I met Big Cakes too. There’s a rap competition by Kix Magazine called In It To Win It and I knew I was going to take part in that, and I also knew that Big Cakes was performing at that event. I saw him walking past and I got his mixtape. There’s this one song on his mixtape called I Wanna Shout and I think I must have listened to that for about two hours straight [laughs]. You know when you just keep reloading a track. That’s what happened. So I texted him asking if he wanted to work with me and he asked me to send him my stuff. I was surprised at how humble and laid back he was, I mean he’s been around for time and he’s been on Kiss FM and that. So yeah man we’re shooting that vid on Sunday! Stay tuned…
Follow Razor on Twitter: @RazorArtist