Almost two decades into his career, the 37-year-old enjoyed his biggest year yet. The catalyst, of course, was Conflict OfInterest: a sprawling, 16-track odyssey of a major label debut, which finally saw the London MC receiving the kind of critical and commercial attention his blistering output has long warranted. The album kickstarted a period that included a Mercury Prize nomination, alongside a string of sold-out shows in venues all over the country.
To mark an incredible 12 months, our cover star for Huck 76 sat down to reflect on the journey that has brought him to the current moment. He’s joined in the issue by a raft of incredible people who also find themselves operating at the peak of their powers right now: artist Amalia Ulman, writer Derek Owusu, Palme d’Or-winning filmmaker Julia Ducournau, underground rap royalty Chris Crack, Japanese Breakfast, Snail Mail – to name just a few.
Elsewhere in the magazine, we look at how the events of the past year have impacted different communities across the world. We spent months with the legendary Ultras of Marseille FC, exploring their evolving relationship with the football team they love and the city they regularly grapple with. Leaving dry land, we tracked the exploits of the Sea Clowns, a boat-based circus collective travelling from port to port, bringing joy and hedonism wherever they dock. We visited Folkestone, Kent, to explore a town in the flux through the eyes of its skate scene, before heading to Dhanbad, India, where we discovered how the pandemic has impacted the lives of the Death Well riders, a daredevil group of motorcycle stuntmen who defy gravity and logic as part of their famed act.”