"I'd like to introduce this grunge rap."
With those words, the drums hit, and Jez Doir's "Heroin" really gets cooking. It's the leadoff track on the L.A. rapper's debut EP, The Funeral, and it's a good indication of what's to follow.
Due out Nov. 18 and streaming right this second at NYLON Guys, Funeral is a moody, reflective seven-song set inspired by some unhappy days in the artist's life.
"I named this EP The Funeral because it is the death of what I was perceived as before; I'm not a party college rapper," Jez says. "It was a dark time in my life, and recording this EP was the only outlet of emotions that I had."
The EP follows 2013's Scarle†† Sage mixtape, which yielded the buzzworthy singles "Candles" and "Love Me to Death," both No. 1 hits on Hype Machine. Centering on some of the family issues—death, substance abuse, etc.—that have dogged him since childhood, Scarle†† Sage established Jez as a soul-bearing lyricist with a bright future and an interesting backstory.
Jez is the son of British singer and guitarist Steve Dior, whose list of collaborators includes notorious Sex Pistols bassist Sid Vidious, and not surprisingly, this rising MC first gravitated toward rock 'n' roll. It wasn't until a cousin slipped him The Eminem Show that he found his true calling, and that explains why Slim Shady and Kurt Cobain seem to figure equally into the The Funeral equation. If that "grunge rap" tag isn't quite right, it speaks to the Drake-ish flow and uneasy grooves that make "Clean Me Up" and "Old No. 7" such choice listening.
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