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On The Radar: Mustafa – ‘Air Forces’

Written By Sam Murphy on 09/23/2020
Mustafa

On The Radar spotlights a new song we’re loving from a fresh face.

Mustafa is having a moment unlike many new artists this year, offering up a second stellar cut Air Forces.

Those with an eye on the Toronto hip-hop scene will recognise Mustafa isn’t exactly a new name. He cut his teeth in rap collective Halal Guys where he proved himself to be a potent lyricist. He’s brought that same vivid imagery to his solo project.

Mustafa calls the style of Air Forces “inner-city folk music”. You can hear that too. It has the narrative-based lyricism of folk while offering an unrelenting rawness.

The instrumental was built around a Sudanese tribal chant paying homage to his heritage. It was also co-produced by Jamie xx, Frank Dukes and Simon Hessman who bring a moody, affecting backdrop to the table.

The whole thing sounds gorgeous and it’s only driven by Mustafa’s instant artistic power. He holds such a presence which is perhaps why he’s already impressed xx, Dukes and James Blake.