News

Interview: BIG FKN GUN On Their 'Pop Models' EP

BIG FKN GUN interview. The South African dark dub project discusses their Pop Models EP.


We've been following the rise of South African dark-dubbers BIG FKN GUN for nearly a year now — from their initial "Pop Models" single to premiering the substance-based "Wunga" and plenty other beats in between. Today marks the release of the group's debut Pop Models EP. We sat down with the group to talk about their vision, influences and get a preview of the new release.

For those who don't know, who is BIG FKN GUN? How'd the project come about?

BIG FKN GUN is a South Afrikan collective known mostly for being supremely unknown. The project came about as a necessity as we all felt a need to do something different, and mould that with our experiences as South Afrikans with a global outlook on things. We love the sounds that are coming out of SA especially Durban which is our home. The Zulu language is so rich and poetic so we thought we could add a bit of Durban slang to the mix.

What are you guys' influences?

The music is really a combination of our surroundings growing up in the townships of South Africa and our aspirations to let our experiences become part of the global community. We felt a need to not emulate our heroes from America, the rest of Afrika and Europe but to take those inspirations and mould them with our own unique experiences. We are influenced by the South Afrikan experience, which is none like any other, there is so much in this country and the history unfolds in front of our eyes everyday so it becomes a great place to grab stories from.

Tell us about the process behind making the Pop Models EP.

What we found interesting from the process of making the EP and giving away some tracks for free is that the youth of the world no matter where they come from they seem to have a lot of similarities and though the language is from this part of the world, somehow they find a way to feel the music wherever they are... which to us was a blessing.

You've got features from Spoek Mathambo, Okmalumkoolkat and Grand Jo. How did they come about?

The features came about through Sol [of BIG FKN GUN] working on the Nombolo One project with those two. It was the next natural thing to collabo on our own project. Initially Sol gave Spoek the "Wunga" beat, which he dismissed as weird until he heard the complete track with vocals. He loved it ever since. We ended up collaborating on "Space" with Okmalumkoolkat.

>>>Preview and buy BIG FKN GUN's Pop Models EP

Popular
Photo by Craig Barritt/Getty Images for Qatar Museums

Influential Louis Vuitton And Off-White Designer Virgin Abloh, Dies at 41

The popular Ghanian-American designer had been battling a rare form of cancer in private for several years.

The fashion industry has lost a talented, unique, and boundary-pushing influence this weekend.

41-year-old Ghanianian-American designer Virgil Abloh has died after a 2 year battle with a rare form of cancer, a statement from his associates LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton said on Sunday. Abloh, founder of luxury streetwear brand Off-White, and artistic director of men's wear at French fashion house Louis Vuitton leaves his wife Shannon, and 2 children - Lowe and Grey. Chairman and CEO of LVMH Bernard Arnault said in a statement, "We are all shocked after this terrible news. Virgil was not only a genius designer, a visionary, he was also a man with a beautiful soul and great wisdom." "The LVMH family joins me in this moment of great sorrow, and we are all thinking of his loved ones after the passing of their husband, their father, their brother, or their friend," he added.

After the news broke on Sunday, Abloh started trending on Twitter, with fans of the designer remembering his influence on music, art, and fashion. The 1990s saw Abloh DJ and the creative director once told The Guardian in a 2016 interview, "When the phone is off, I play my favorite songs really loud for myself, and I'm not talking to anyone. I'm not managing anything. It's just like a time when I can listen to music… I'll be DJing after I'm done designing or doing anything else." Virgil got his hands into designing album artworks after strumming up a friendship with American rapper Kanye West before becoming the creative director of West's DONDA Creative House. More recently known for his creative streetwear brand 'Off-White' the designer became popular among fashion-conscious youngsters and will forever be immortalized.

A statement posted to Abloh's Instagram explained that "Virgil chose to endure his battle privately since his diagnosis in 2019, undergoing numerous challenging treatments, all while helming several significant institutions that span fashion, art, and culture"

Friends, fans, and colleagues took to social media to share their well-wishes for Virgil as he transitions to his next destination.



get okayafrica in your inbox

popular.

How Relocating to Ghana Helped Reinvigorate Jewelry Designer Aisha Asamany's Work

Moving to Ghana gave Aisha Asamany's luxury jewelry brand, inspired by Adinkra symbols that traditionally project strength, fearlessness, love and power, renewed verve to tell personal stories of her growing clientele.