Montreal’s Wasiu Stays Frosty with the Snow Mexican EP and the Inventive “No Jumper” Video
Titled After a Plausible Trump Tweet, Wasiu’s New EARMILK-Premiered Effort Showcases the MTL Emcee’s Unique Perspective
Critical Praise for Wasiu:
“Wasiu is the hip-hop voice of Montreal.” – i-D
“The young Montreal rapper has been working steadily to make a name for himself and it looks like he’s on the right track.” – Pigeons & Planes
“Wasiu is another one to look out for this year.” – Complex
“Many rappers twice his age would be wise to take notes…” – Okayplayer
“Wasiu is pretty much the embodiment of Montreal’s cultural shift.” – Noisey
“Wasiu is a rapper in a league of his own” – High Snobiety
Montreal’s Wasiu is a rapper’s rapper, mixing politics and punchlines with tremendous technical proficiency. Coming out of the Great White North with seven ice cold new tracks, Wasiu shares the Snow Mexican EP. Stuffed with innovative electronic production from the likes of Tommy Kruise, Dear Lola, and others, the Snow Mexican EP is an engaging listen. Inspired by a fake (yet believable) Donald Trump tweet about Canada, Snow Mexican is Wasiu’s most politically charged project yet, approaching issues from the perspective of a perpetual outsider–an African in Canada, an English-speaker in a French-speaking city, and a Canadian trying to make it in the American rap industry. Snow Mexican features previously released highlights such as the profound, jazz-inflected, Outkast-influenced “MTLien,” premiered by Mass Appeal, the strip club deconstruction “Daddy Issues,” which boasted some of the most politically provocative cover art you’ll see all year, and the sinister, VIBE–premiered title track. Premiered by EARMILK and with cover art that pays tribute to Snoop Dogg‘s classic Doggystyle, Snow Mexican is a versatile and lyrical effort that proves that Wasiu is one of the continent’s strongest rappers.
To celebrate the release, Wasiu lets loose the free-flowing, visual for “No Jumper,” a chiming, meltycanon and Dear Lola-produced standout from the Snow Mexican EP. Exploring his hometown of Montreal in search of quality bodega snacks, Wasiu unhurriedly walks through vibrant streets. Dodging threats ranging from a bickering couple, to a prejudiced police officer, to drive-by shooters with terrible aim, Wasiu never loses his cool, confidently rhyming his tongue-twisting verse as he walks. A clever and eventful video filmed in a single prolonged tracking shot, the Xavier Cantin-Lemieux-directed clip demonstrates Wasiu’s unflappability as it comments on how people much people miss on their own blocks when they bury their heads in earbuds.
Explains Wasiu, “I decided to release the Snow Mexican EP while the finishing touches are being made to my upcoming album MTLiens 2. Though it sticks to the reoccurring MTLiens theme of invading the industry from the North, it was ultimately inspired by Donald Trump’s campaign and presidency. Ever since he announced his candidacy, he’s taken over everything. I can’t go a day without reading about some new dumb shit he’s done. So I figured I’d use this phenomenon to my advantage. Trump invaded our TVs, social media, and minds over the last 2 years so it’s only right that he’d infiltrate this EP as well. But it had to be done in a controversial way for the most controversial person in recent years…hence the single artworks and EP cover. The cover, by Antae Arts, is an homage to Snoop Dogg’s Doggystyle cover with a cold northern twist. And given the recent controversy with Snoop’s BADBADNOTGOOD music video, all the igloo bricks seemed to fall into place just right. From the artworks, to the skits, to the songs, this EP shows a glimpse of the MTLien experience from the Snow Mexican perspective.”
A rhyming technician with endless bars and a new flow for every song, Wasiu is one of the most respected emcees in the underground Canadian scene. Perhaps known best in his homeland for his commercials for Kijiji, Canada’s answer to Craigslist, which showcase Wasiu’s prodigious skills behind the mic, Wasiu has earned praise from the likes of Noisey, Complex, Pigeons & Planes, and Okayplayer. In the past year, Wasiu performed at SXSW, The Montreal Jazz Fest, POP Montreal, and Canadian Music Week, and opened for Little Simz, Jazz Cartier, BADBADNOTGOOD, Grandmaster Flash, Dead Obies, Sean Leon, and others. His single “P.K. Subban” garnered over 150k plays on Spotify, contributing to a combined 1.2 million total. The Snow Mexican EP is now available for stream and purchase, and look out for MTLiens 2 coming later this year.
Watch “No Jumper”: https://youtu.be/zsF3pVxmzaU
Listen to the Snow Mexican EP: https://soundcloud.com/afrowasiu/sets/snow-mexican-ep/ // open.spotify.com/album/0XU3hqVUv4KOewI5f1mb9a
Purchase the Snow Mexican EP: itunes.apple.com/ca/album/snow-me…d1245841847?l=fr
Check out the EARMILK premiere: http://earmilk.com/2017/06/07/wasiu-is-unconcerned-with-the-haters-in-his-video-for-no-jumper-premiere/
For Wasiu, being a pariah has always been a constant. A child of divorce from a Nigerian Muslim father and Haitian Protestant-Christian mother, he was torn between worlds, seen by both communities as impure, and a “mixed breed”—not entirely Haitian, not quite Nigerian. Even though he’s Québecois (a Québec native), his immigrant parents tainted his claim to the province. Raised by his mother after his father moved to Toronto, he felt obliged to fit in with her side of the family. Resentments towards his father’s beliefs and culture led him to drop his father-given middle name—Wasiu—so that he wouldn’t be teased in his predominantly white school, where he battled black stereotypes by pushing his intellect past expectations.
Overcoming adversity and using those lessons as lyrical fuel is Wasiu’s strongest suit. He is preparing his debut album which funnels his life experiences into a culturally defining opus that balances both optimistic and pessimistic perspectives on human themes. “I’m showing what people view as both the good and the bad,” he says, “and how without the bad, you can’t have the good, and so you start to appreciate the bad… for the good.”
“No Jumper”: https://youtu.be/zsF3pVxmzaU
“Daddy Issues”: https://soundcloud.com/afrowasiu/daddy-issues/
“Snow Mexican”: https://soundcloud.com/afrowasiu/snowmexican30
“P.K. Subban”: https://soundcloud.com/thisisjuspop/wasiu-pk-subban/
“Outer Space”: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UW3Ia_6ycxM
“Good Girl”: https://soundcloud.com/w-a-s-i-u/goodgirl/
“I Got It”: https://soundcloud.com/w-a-s-i-u/igotit
“Picture Imperfect”: https://soundcloud.com/w-a-s-i-u/picture-imperfect-produced-by-aap-p-on-the-boards/
“I Know” (Remix): https://soundcloud.com/w-a-s-i-u/i-know-remix/s-0BIOt
“Gros Lysick”: https://soundcloud.com/w-a-s-i-u/gros-lysick-freestyle
Bio, photos, and streams available here: http://www.audibletreats.com/wasiu