Octavian’s ‘Little’ Is Definitely Gonna Do Bits This Summer

Dramatic ballroom brass, James Blake-ian breakdowns and a coarse but crooning voice on ‘Party Here’ announced French born, South East London living Octavian as a stylistic wunderkind and one of the most singularly distinctive voices in UK rap at the end of 2017. The track was anthemic without reaching but still suffered from a kids choir on a rooftop quality to this listeners ears, however bars like “It’s straight eye for an eye but look how you’re both blind, kinda sad that he died but look how your boy rides” and “Your mandem are getting too close!” satiated my need for overt aggression in rap and showed Octavian’s willingness to insert road weary wisdom into what was ostensibly some feel good, synth pop madness.

2018 has seen the 21 year old sign with the venerable Black Butter Records on the back of ‘Party Here’s success, and recent releases have managed to stray closer to the sounds of his contemporaries whilst doubling down on the curious sense of experimentation running through his solo work. From trading limber raps with Sam Wise of the House of Pharoahs clan on the gaudy, piano led ‘100 Degrees’ to the essentially verse-less ‘Hands’, a self produced, enthralling endorphin dump of a tune practically begging for festival season with its buzz-saw bass, drunken sounding platitudes and handclaps, the rapper/singer has quickly established himself as a genre giddy maven; skilled enough to spin an instrumental but consciously crafting songs with something more in mind.

‘Little’ is the most straightforward of his singles so far, a suave trap leaning number with DJ Mustard type keys and bass, a sharp breathy organ, and some well delivered skrt adlibs. 012’s inviting production does most of the the heavy lifting but Octavian’s silky autotune still finds moments to excel; the run with “crep check ooh la la” is extremely agreeable. It’s an upbeat track primarily concerned with the spoils of quick success, and while the title of his next project Revenge hints at a more complex look on the negatives of newfound fame and notoriety, Octavian seems happy to delight on the net positives of his come up here, and summer will definitely be better for it.

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June 11
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