For our regular Future Is Now column we profile the hottest artists who are climbing the charts, breaking the Internet or just dominating our office stereos.
SOUNDS LIKE: A young man channelling his old soul into erudite, incisive lyrics that weave through Nineties NYC boom bap beats given a modern British makeover.
FOR FANS OF: Mos Def, Skepta, Kanye West, Homeboy Sandman.
WHY YOU SHOULD PAY ATTENTION: Twenty-two-year-old UK rapper Loyle Carner (a spoonerism on birth name Ben Coyle-Larner) was raised in South London with his tight-knit family (his mother and younger brother feature in most of his striking music videos). Born with dyslexia and ADHD ("The more I've come to understand it, the more I've learned to use it almost as a superpower, as opposed to a hindrance"), Carner was taken by poetry at an early age – he cites his biggest influences as poet Langston Hughes alongside rappers Mos Def and Common. His love of wordplay led to an interest in hip-hop and battle rapping while in primary school.
Debut LP Yesterday's Gone was recorded over three years in various bedrooms. Says Carner: "I don't see the need to re-record songs in a proper studio... if you record something it should be happening then and there, capturing that emotional truth." The MC isn't one to rest on his laurels: "I can't wait to get started on the next record. I just want to make some more tunes – see if I can better myself, that's the hope."
HE SAYS: "My Dad made an album that no-one knew about, and he sadly died a couple of years ago, and after he passed we found this album. There's a tune on it called "Yesterday's Gone", and it's my favourite tune of his. He was a fantastic musician and never got a chance to release his shit, so I figured I'd call my album Yesterday's Gone and put that song [as a hidden track] on it, as a thank you for his inspiration, because I wouldn't be here if it wasn't for him."
HEAR FOR YOURSELF: "The Isle of Arran" is a showcase for Carner's poetic lyricism.