Updated: Sep 7, 2020
We kick off our brand new article series, 'THE RUNDOWN' speaking exclusively with East London rapper FOURAY. The Rundown aims to introduce and understand artists from the underground scene putting the spotlight onto their origins, mindsets and music.
FOURAY who is currently based in North London is an aspiring artist emerging from the underground scene. Starting his career back in 2018, Fouray has stunned the scene ever since and become an integral part of it's community with many releases and a recent EP drop. Fouray shows his personal and emotional side on a lot of his music but in order to understand him fully, we have to go all the way back back to the beginning.
Speaking to exclusively UKUR, Fouray explained how he got into music and how it has changed him ever since.
"Well, i’ve always had a really special relationship with music and i always felt like i’d make music but i never really knew where to start!
''That’s until a really good friend of mine (now, we barely knew each other back then) and I was in a French lesson. He pulled up to my table and told me that he could see that I wasn't too interested in being... a regular person if that makes sense. He could tell I didn’t really want to go have a boring office job, he could tell that i wanted to do something. He spoke to me and said everything I’d always wanted to hear. I still remember how crazy it felt to find someone else who actually wanted to change the world the same way I did. Big shoutout to Ahboi!"
Ever since that French lesson, Fouray has worked to turn those intentions into reality. I want to take you back to July 6th 2018 when he dropped his debut single 'Shine', rated for its upbeat melodies and unmatched charisma, this was the start of a new sound in that was not so widely used back then. Fouray managed to fuse the style of the track even further with his next drop 'ERA' a few months later. Perfectly matching the vibe for that time of the year, Fouray embraces his talents as he grasps an articulated style of rapping normally to then switch it up by placing an emphasis on his voice to the point where the whole dynamic of the track changes. This is personally the of input from Fouray I love to hear.
We asked how FOURAY how he would summarise his trademark sound:
"My sound is kinda hard to describe, I feel like it changes so often that it’s not really tied to a specific genre or anything. It’s more like a feeling, I use music to express my emotions - Night Bus' is a song that I can’t help but smile at when i listen to it and I hope that others feel the same. But a song like 'Strawberry Dreams' is actually much more “sad”, it’s about all the conflicting emotions, pains, and distractions in love but it still has a really boppy, happy sound. I feel like if i had to put it into words, it’s like trying to find a way to smile, even through pain."
Learning this from Fouray I personally think you can appreciate his style and sound even deeper, on a personal level you are able to relate what he is saying in his tracks within your day to day life, it goes to show in all of the music he has released. Let's take a closer look at his singles.
After the release of ERA, Fouray kicked off 2019 with 'Switch', one of my favourites from Fouray. You can hear in the track that he has found a sound and flow that he is comfortable with. Next up he dropped 'Strawberry Dreams' with his first feature Abiigenisis. The two really have great chemistry here, bouncing off of each-others vibe easily to keep the track solid. Even though the lyrics are downcast and dejected they manage to create a hopeful and bright sound with their flow and pitch choices. This was Fouray's 3rd and 4th drops of the year (on major streaming platforms) with them all sounding versatile, melodious and memorable.
2020 LOCO: EP
Fouray's long-awaited EP had landed for the people on February 14th earlier this year, coincidentally being Valentine's Day, with features from Zedd X, EL K, Obie and Maestro.
The first track on the EP 'LOCO' produced by Obie is waviest of the 3 tracks. He brings the best out of Fouray with this beat with an ambient feel as Fouray vents throughout the track explaining his surroundings and what's happening in his life:
"man i gotta go and get it, aint' living if its low low, she wanna fuck with the cartel, she don't know thats it loco."
The second track has two features accompanying the MC, Zedd X and EL K. Fouray yet again jumps into a new vibe showing how flexible his sound can be and the two features boost the aura of the track to a whole new level with their eruptive flows and the hook is a perfect example of that.
"Fly away in my space cruise i can leave today boo, start the engine fly away and i aint' gotta tell you, i told you."
The final track on the project 'Phantom' is a straight talk tune with a hard-hitting trap beat that connects well with Fouray's style. Fouray expresses himself again in this one letting the fans know whats going on with him. The feature, Maestro, adds character to the track that finishes it off well with the hook linking it all together.
"You know it baby, growing so much its crazy, i don't know why they hate me, liking my bars why they fascinated."
3 months later, Fouray follows through with his next single featuring Mezzo, 'Flawless Blue'.
Mezzo is the backbone in this track with his solid spitting for the first two and a half minutes and he delivers it perfectly. Accompanying him in the other half of the tune while also delivering a powerful verse, this one is one of Fouray's most dynamic tracks in my opinion and I loved the idea behind it, this one was instantly into our playlist.
Teaming up with producer Wesli D and the charismatic Alexander, Fouray then delivered one of the tracks of the summer with 'Night Bus'. Listening to this you just can't help but have a smile on your face, just as Fouray explained earlier. It's such a joyful and radiant track that reminds you of summer while also providing ace lyricism. Wesli D brings the song to life with this idealistic beat.
This brings us to Fouray's latest drop 'Gold Haze' which features the likes of Denzino and Eli died on the instrumental. It has that reminiscent sound that we all crave once in a while. "Old school love" is the theme behind the track as Fouray and Denzino express their ways. We even get to hear Denzino in a different light as he follows Fouray's delicate flow in a way we haven't heard before. Eli Died samples the vibes of Wiley's 'You Were Always Part 2' Ft. Skepta and Belly allowing Fouray to open up the track with this:
"Smile again, you were always so down but now the sun came back around."
Now that we are up to date with all of his releases I think its time we get to know who Fouray is a little bit more and the mindset behind his sound. We had the opportunity to speak with Fouray and get to know more about him and his plans for the future...
UKUR: Tell us a bit more about yourself?
FOURAY: "I'm 18 years old, I’ll be 19 in October. yeesh. I'm currently based in East London but starting next month hopefully, I’ll be based in North West. I play bass as well as rap and sing, and I’m always active on social media (Instagram dm's aren’t the best but twitter is definitely my favourite right now)."
UKUR: Who are you vibing with from the scene right now?
FOURAY: "Nace - the stuff he’s working on is blowing my mind. For-real, he’s one of the few artists i know completely in his own lane.
Cloutgod Duggie - he just dropped a project recently and it’s a must-listen. Friday Vybzin’ is my favourite song off of it.
Alexander and Jet - these two are geniuses. they’re honestly two of the best artists I know in almost every aspect of the word. They really have the potential to change everything
Abiiogenesis - he recently dropped a semi-self titled project, “Genesis”, and that's another must-listen''.
UKUR: Any projects in the works at the moment?
FOURAY: "I’ve been working on a lot of music, with a lot of really interesting people. Stuff with some of my favourite artists are in the works, so stay prepped and keep an eye out!"
UKUR: Keep them guessing! Who are your influences in music?
FOURAY: "SL, Lil Uzi Vert and Smino are three of my biggest influences sonically and it’s probably pretty obvious when you listen to my music. Generally though, I’m influenced by almost every artist I enjoy. Artists like Len, Nace, and Ayrtn have definitely inspired me to think about music differently, their sounds are all so unique and refined. Another artist who’s had a huge impact on my sound is 5eb - I fell in love with his song 5unny, featuring Dreadz and it easily the reason I am where I am today."
UKUR: Have you thought about creating visuals?
FOURAY: "It’s been on my mind for a while now but I’ve always put it off because I wanted to focus on improving my artistry before focusing on further expanding the world I'm trying to build. That being said, though, I’m very excited for when we start."
UKUR: Which artists in the scene would you like top collaborate with?
FOURAY: "I've been blessed with good relationships with a lot of the artists I admire and so I've got lots of plans for collaborations with other artists. I’ve still got lots of artists I’d really like to create with:
Finch Fetti - it feels like he’s got the midas touch when it comes to production. My all time favourite of his is Kishin’s Revenge, I remember that being a song that definitely inspired me to do better.
Zaye - he hasn’t dropped much solo stuff yet but when I say he’s got the potential to be the best in the scene I mean it. His flows are infectious, he raps in a way that only he could over beats he produces himself, that match that unique energy. He can do anything, basically."
UKUR: How did you come up with the name Fouray?
FOURAY: "It comes from my real name- my first three and last names begin with the letter a, and I thought it fit me way more than the name I used to go by. I’m a big believer in names having power, as well, and I feel like the word Fouray has a fitting meaning. but then again, that might just be me being overly poetic as usual."
Big up Fouray for giving us the time to talk to him and such great insight, make sure to check out all of his discographies we talked about (the links are below). You can also find all the songs in our Spotify playlist here. We will definitely be featuring all of Fouray's future drops so keep an eye out for when he appears on the website and our Spotify playlist next.
Be sure to follow Fouray on Instagram!
Words by: Sam Pyke
Edited by: Jack Slade
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