Much like Mercury Prize winning rapper Dave before him, SFZ is not only an exciting new rapper bursting onto the UK Conscious Hip Hop scene but also a classically-trained pianist. The brainchild of UK based Joe Ordish, SFZ has already gained considerable attention from BBC Introducing with a number of radio plays already under his belt. Completely self recorded and self produced the new single ‘Elevate’ is not only a demonstration of SFZ’s unquestionable talent, but also shows how hip hop can feel authentic and honest.
Opening with lo-fi beats and sampled piano, ‘Elevate’ is an ultra-chill, stripped-back bop all based around very simple yet effective loops. SFZ’s crystalline relaxed flow comes trickling into the track, immediately comparable to the likes of Loyle Carner and The Streets before deep bass punches in beneath the bouncing top ends. Backed up by impeccable production work, the minimal nature of the track is a prime example of how an artist can create an impactful soundscape with sparse instrumentation.
Having battled with deep depression for his large portion of his adult life as well with alcohol and drug abuse, Joe has been through a number of struggles and uses music as a form of therapy. Rapping about his experiences, Joe uses his music to not only help himself heal but to also share positive and relatable messages:
“We should be role models for ourselves and for those around us, to be kind and to love.”
With an upcoming debut album planned for next year, SFZ is certainly one to watch.