Even Though He Just Started
Name: Haleek Maul
Where he’s from: Brooklyn/Barbados
When he started: 2012
Most like: Death Grips, Tyler the Creator
Sounds like: Rap repossessing witch house’s swag
Born in Brooklyn, raised in Barbados, sixteen year old rapper Haleek Maul records rawly existential hip-hop with lyrics the vacillate between the streets and the next world. He sounds bummed beyond his years.
In his FACT Magazine interview he candidly tells of getting into rap at the age of eleven through Kanye, Weezy and Eminem, while coming off as more mature than any of his early idols. Indeed, his sound is shockingly grown as well, pushing a murky, Houston-inspired envelope. Lyrically he’s got angst and confusion consistent with being a precocious kid growing up in a world that obviously needs to get its shit together. (If you don’t believe there’s a genuinely weary old heart underneath that Mishka t-shirt, you can talk to the accounting classes he taking.) Honestly, it’s those precocious kids that are the scariest. But the people who should probably fear Mr. Maul most are other emcees and producers.
His recently released Oxyconteen EP is drawing fast respect for his chillingly plain but wiry flow and brooding avant ghetto beats provided by the unlikely likes of Supreme Cuts, The-Drum, Strat Carter and King Britt. Each of the six songs is a freakishly memorable submersion into the most desolate aspects of coming of age. Most people who survive would like to forget that discovering life for the first time has a dark side. Haleek Maul is here to remind you.