hmv's Next Big Thing #117: Avelino
Who is he?
Hailing from Tottenham in north London, Achi Avelino – better known simply as Avelino – has been making waves since the release of his first mixtape, 2013's Underdog Music, but a second mixtape released a year later, Iconic Ambition, won the young rapper plenty of fans on the UK's grime scene and since then his star as been steadily on the rise. He's been supporting Stormzy at various shows and collaborated with Wretch 32 on a 2015 joint mixtape titled Young Fire, Old Flame.
2016 saw the release of his first EP, F.Y.O. (F*** Your Opinion) and there has been a steady stream of singles between then and early this year, the most recent being a track featuring Stormzy and Skepta called 'Energy'. He's also featured on XL's recent New Gen compilation alongside other underground rap and grime artists including Renz and Tiggs Da Author.
What does he sound like?
Avelino has been working with various producers including Labrinth, Wizzy Wow and Raf Riley, so musically speaking there's quite a lot of variety amongst the beats on his various releases so far, which incorporate hip-hop, grime and trap beats. His rapping style makes the most of his deep baritone and his lyrics are more cerebral than most. If you've yet to check out his performances on Fire In The Booth for Charlie Sloth's show on Radio 1Xtra, that'd be a good place to start.
Why should I be excited?
Labrinth has described him as one of the best lyricists in the UK and the 25-year old seems to be earning respect from some of the biggest rap and grime artists. With guys like Stormzy, Skepta and Kano doing so well, the UK's rap scene is finally starting to get the recognition it deserves from the mainstream media and that can only be a good thing for Avelino, who looks like one of the UK's most promising prospects.
Can I hear something?
You can check out his new track 'Energy' below and there are plenty more tracks for you to get stuck into on Avelino's Youtube channel.