Over the past few years, the New Jersey rapper Fatboi Sharif has made a name for himself with a vivid, disorienting, utterly unique sound. Sharif, a Stereogum Artist To Watch in 2021, delivers mordant lyrics in a stretched-out, theatrical mutter, and he favors eerie, experimental, minor-key productions. Sharif playful and charismatic, but he’s also driven to make shit that makes you feel weird. On his new album, he’s doing that more effectively than ever.
Fatboi Sharif likes to make entire projects with individual producers. In the past year, he’s released a couple of them: Preaching In Havana with Noface last Halloween, Planet Unfaithful with Roper Williams earlier this year. On the new album Decay, Sharif joins forces with Steel Tipped Dove, a veteran New York producer known for his work with Armanda Hammer, R.A.P. Ferreira, and the extended Das Racist cinematic universe. They make a great match.
There are no guest-rappers on Decay. The whole record is nothing but Fatboi Sharif rapping in jagged, unpredictable cadences over Steel Tipped Dove’s flickering, evocative tracks. The album will get a wide release tomorrow. For the moment, it’s a Bandcamp exclusive. On first listen, it’s an absorbing listen, but I haven’t to imagine that it’ll really come alive when you play it at night. Check it out below.
Decay is out 7/21 on Backwoodz Studioz.