The D'banj cohort and imminent star Gets To hip-hop's roots
Name: Adian Coker
Where he’s From: London, via Sierra Leone
Most Similar: Nas, Public Enemy
Sounds Like: The Bronx in the 80s with a British accent
It might not be his most deliberate selling point, but what I absolutely love about Adian Coker’s music is its old school underpinnings. The London MC (born in Sierra Leone) is certainly better equipped with technology than his elders (he’s also been trained in the studio), but he retains that familiar wall-of-sound, statick-y abandon originated in the Public Enemy days. They were the songs that scared — certain — people because it sounded like the MCs were blasting into your room and taking over. Adian also has a steady, conversational inflection, conscious lyrics and relentlessly looping beats, all of which amount to head-bobbing nostalgia, with entirely modern wubs and wobbles.
Adian was born in Sierra Leone, and moved to London at the age of four. He learned to play guitar and keys growing up, and he majored in English as a means of informing his lyrics. He’s worked with and produced some industry greats, including James ‘Lerock’ Loughrey, who has worked with Joss Stone, and Nigerian MC D’Banj. Armed with all this inspiration, he dropped his mixtape The Colour of Magic, and is about to drop another one, featuring the single “Airs & Graces,” below.