Overturning narratives, flipping stereotypes, tackling head-on anyone who’s scapegoating minorities, is something both Heems and Riz MC don’t do lightly. Now 2 years since the release of their debut EP, as the duo Swet Shop Boys, the Anglo-American/Indo-Pak MC’s have linked up once again on the first single ‘T5’ from their forthcoming album.
‘T5’ is a charged up lyrical retort to predatory racial profiling and random stop & searches between the border lines of both these US and British MC’s – “Terminal 5, Terminal 1, Think we’re termites, wanna terminate us.” The Swet Shop Boys first full length album ‘Cashmere’ arrives via Customs on October 14th as a collab between the Queens, NY based former Das Racist rapper Heems aka Himanshu Suri with London rapper/actor Riz MC aka Riz Ahmed.
Both Heems & Riz MC reflect the life and times of rising working class rappers from immigrant Indian and Pakistani families, grafting on the frontline and creating their own kind of Trans-Atlantic treaty. As the Swet Shop Boys they’re lyrically loaded sharp shooters addressing racist rhetoric on both sides of the channel, with a slick quips and quirky wordplay.
The first single ‘T5’ comes locked and loaded with production from Redinho who brings an arsenal of drums to the hype harmonium. Giving us a taster of ‘Cashmere’, the project promises to deliver a soundtrack of Qawwali hand claps, Bollywood string drama, spiralling sitars, Western synths – from 808’s to tablas and tars, dholaks and doumbeks.
Courting controversy in equal measure, Heems has already pulled off a standout 2015 debut with ‘Eat, Pray Thug’, and Riz MC’s recent mixtape ‘Englistan’, has extended the spotlight beyond his rising star in Hollywood.
Cashmere the 11 track project is out October 14 and looking at the tracklist with tracks listed like ‘Zayn Malik’, ‘Phone Tap’ and ‘No Fly List’, it’s apparent ‘T5’ is just a drop in the ocean for what’s about to be unleashed.