In little more than a year he’s come a long way from the Northampton council estate that inspired his critically acclaimed debut album.
But while Nothing Great About Britain shines a light on a politically divided country as it lurches towards the uncertainty of Brexit, rapper Slowthai admits his outspoken attitude was inspired by the togetherness and carefree abandon of 90s Britpop pioneers Oasis.
‘Growing up, people always chose between Blur or Oasis,’ the 24-year old explained during an appearance at the Brilliant Sound Experience.
Inspiration: Slowthai admits his outspoken delivery was inspired by the togetherness and carefree abandon of 90s Britpop pioneers Oasis
‘But for me it was both. Growing up and being in pubs and on the estate with all the lads, I found this similar to Liam (Gallagher), the way he was.
‘The way I was raised to be. They inspire me by not giving a f**k about who they are, and I think that was the most important thing growing up.’
Raised by a single mother of four on a Northampton council estate, Slowthai’s remarkable ascendance will be underlined when he supports Gallagher, now a solo artist, on his forthcoming tour.
The five-month roadshow begins in Helsinki on August 24, and the rapper admits he can’t wait to meet Gallagher and the singer’s youngest son Lennon – himself an aspiring musician – for the first time.
‘I’m just excited to like learn from him and spend time with him,’ he said. ‘I haven’t met him yet, it’s been like just messages and that’s mad, you wouldn’t ever think Liam Gallagher would be like back and forth.
Empowering: ‘The way I was raised to be. They inspire me by not giving a f**k about who they are, and I think that was the most important thing growing up’
‘I’m excited to meet him and his son. His son is very in tune with what’s going on with the culture in music at this point in time and he puts his dad on to it.
‘Through his son, his dad always plays homage to his son. They have a beautiful relationship.’
Much like Oasis, the rapper – real name Tyron Frampton – has enjoyed a meteoric rise, owed in no small part to word of mouth following the release of extended plays I WISH I KNEW in 2017, and RUNT, released the following year.
Idol: Slowthai’s remarkable ascendance will be underlined when he supports Liam Gallagher, now a solo artist, on his forthcoming tour
Both were shaped by his difficult upbringing and life on the estate that served as the gritty cover art for his debut album.
‘You’re a product of your environment, yet as much as you are conditioned into a way you don’t want to live, it still happens,’ he said.
‘My sister and I grew up in a flat on Spring Burrows, where the album cover is shot. It was the first house we got from the council.’
He added: ‘I grew up on council estates. Be it like my outlook on life was at one-point s**t, Northampton has a lot of people that are great.
‘Everywhere there are people that are great, but no one can act on it because you’re not handed anything on a silver platter.
Well done: The rapper is currently celebrating his album’s nomination for this year’s Mercury Music Prize
‘There it’s just you work in a factory, you work in an office, you go to college, you might go to Uni. If you go to Uni you end up back in Northampton working in the factory anyway.’
The factory is however far behind as the rapper as he celebrates his album’s nomination for this year’s Mercury Music Prize.
He faces competition from artists including The 1975, NAO, Foals and fellow grime star Dave for the award – but he insists he’s already won by receiving a nod.
‘I value that one in particular,’ he admitted. ‘That one’s the one, the Mercury, the only one we care about. And I’m a firm believer of manifesting it and believing something and putting energy to it and if you do that it will all come right.
‘All of us together as soon as we got it was like f**king yes. You f**kers, we f**king knew it, we predicted it. But it’s f**king a blessing, words can’t describe these feelings.
‘Even the fact of like having an album, this is my greatest achievement.’
Success: Debut album Nothing Great About Britain shines a light on a politically divided country as it lurches towards the uncertainty of Brexit