Written by: Traffic Willis (@TrafficWillis)
When I first heard Octavian, I was dueling over the aux with a homie, a duel which turned into the discovery of the most refreshing sound I had heard. Given the music market’s generally uniformed sound, especially in rap, I found the Waldo. The London-raised artist who was born in Paris, has everything that can appeal to the ear.
A voice of depth and lightness, yet smooth and scratchy, is a genetic miracle when you hear his contrast of in tune, airy sound over a fusion trap-house production. The irony of the the literal “traphouse” is not so ironic, considering Octavian was homeless at one point.
He first gained considerable attention when co-founder of OVO, Oliver El-Khatib played two of his singles back to back on OVO Sound Radio, directly following Pharell’s world premiere of his Drake-appointed remix. “Lemonade.” At only 21, Octavian also gained the invaluable Drake co-sign. Since then, Octavian has been the resonant vocal presence, on tracks like Mura Masa’s summer hit, “Move Me,” along with his own singles like "Party Here" and “Little.” Now with the release of his debut Full-length, “Spaceman,” Octavian officially has a discography that I enjoyed from top to bottom. Classifying him as a “British rapper” a mostly negative Americanized connotation, would be just as wrong as the negativity behind it.
The versatility of Octavian is unquestionable, and I would be wasting your time if I said anything else besides, see how you like Octavian right now, starting with his "Party Here” visual. A nice preface before getting into the what is, in my opinion, the best album of 2018.