The Harlem rapper explained that the ALL SMILES title covers a “concept project” that stretches beyond music, and while he did not reveal what the actual album title will be, he did share that he has a myriad of accompanying visuals already shot. “One thing I can tell you is that the name isn’t gonna be All Smiles – you know, I never publicly said that my album was called All Smiles! That one is more of a concept project, it’s music and more,” Flacko said, “I’m wrapping up the new album now; I’ve been shooting so many visuals for it. I don’t want to be cliche or sound like a salesman, but I’ve pushed myself to the limit on everything. Going from that industrial, subversive sound from [2018 album] Testing and then graduating with a more polished sound… I just like where it is.”
He added that his current playlist is a mixture of hip-hop and music from the ’60s, which he affectionately calls his era,” I listen to The Stones, obviously. The Zombies, The Monkees, Jefferson Airplane. Jimi Hendrix, of course! James Brown. This is technically [from the] early 70s, but my favourite rock album is Electric Warrior by T. Rex.” Rocky continued, “You know how in the 50s, people watched TV in black and white? Guys like Chuck Berry, Buddy Holly and The Beatles wore suits, fresh cuts, uniforms. Then the 60s brought colour TV, and The Beatles took all the money they made and splurged on what they loved: going to India, tripping out on psychedelics, playing the sitar and spinning records backwards. They were experimenting because they could afford it, and doing something so weird it became a new genre… People [are] still trying to catch up with the 60s.” He also believes that experimental music isn’t really welcomed in the music industry nowadays as “[y]ou won’t hear it on the radio,” but he does give those trailblazers their flowers. “Shout-outs to the pioneers who still take risks and do what they want.”
Stay tuned for more info on A$AP Rocky’s TESTING followup.
Elsewhere in music, Drake is 2022’s most-streamed artist so far.