The turntablist, beatmaker, MC, video director and graphic designer 20syl has been making quality music since 1995. The former front-man of legendary French acts Hocus Pocus and C2C has built an enduring career on his unique and very elite scratch approach.
The 36-year-old, who was born Sylvain Richard, has put out two killer 5-track EPs in the last two years; ‘Motifs (2014) and then Motifs II”, which dropped last month. These releases come following a string of remixes that 20syl dropped covering artists like Rihanna, Kendrick Lamar and Ed Sheeran.
Some reviewers have categorized his electronic sound as a form of hip-hop. 20syl clarified by telling TheBackpackerz.com, “I do not particularly seek to be “hip-hop. I've never claimed to spearhead this style. The Hocus Pocus piece, ‘Hip Hop?’, also includes a question mark so it was already a question that arose to me at the time… There are certain elements or ingredients in hip-hop that speak to me musically, especially the rhythmic, very rugged side; almost trance in the loops. Therefore, when I compose, it is these aspects that I try to develop…”
His latest video for his collaboration with rapper Fashawn shows 20syl’s impressive hip-hop chops in a clip directed by Will & Gab. ‘Copycat’ is arguably his most urban sounding track to date, yet it still maintains that instantly recognizable, signature 20syl sound.
Shortly before the release of the ‘Copycat’ video, 20syl released a psychedelic video for his more synth-laden track ‘Back & Forth’, directed by Porthé. The French director’s animated trip from the inside of an atom to the end of the universe fits the music of the track perfectly, which it should considering the song was actually composed for the video. "I've always liked 20syl's work," Porthé told Dezeen, "I sent him an animation, he liked it and composed a song for it."
Check out both video’s below and follow The NU for updates on upcoming tour news and music from 20syl.
20syl ft Fashawn - Copycat
20syl - Back & Forth