Grime is by no means a new genre of music, but thanks to the recent rise in popularity of UK artists like Skepta, a certain number of hip-hop fans across the world are just now hearing about it for the first time. Better late than never, in our opinion, especially because the Grime scene that first sprung out of the UK’s Dancehall and Drum & Bass scenes is as vibrant and prolific as ever. Case in point, this new track by Darq E Freaker, from his forthcoming EP.

Darq E Freaker has been active for several years now, and a lot of you may know his name from the track “Blueberry (Pills & Cocaine)” which featured Danny Brown, or if you’re the crate digging type, you also may have seen his name on the production credits for Danny Brown’s album “Old,” as the London native produced a track called “Handstand” on that release. But if you’re just hearing about Darq E Freaker for the first time, then again, better late than never. We got wind of his most recent release “2C-I” and caught up with him to talk new music, influences, and Grime’s place in the overall hip-hop spectrum.

How did you get into making music?
I got into making music when my friend whose dad worked at Island records gave me a copy of FL Studio. At the time I was still in school.

How long did it take you to finish your new EP?
From August till December of last year but I was finishing off some other music as well.

Your music fuses grime and rave music; what’s the creative process like bringing those two genres together?
This EP in particular features a fusion of grime and rave music thats referential to certain types of London club music. In this instance, I’m introducing rave sounds to the drums you’d typically hear in grime or hip-hop.

What’s the story behind the title of 2C-I?
There’s not really a specific story behind it. But I’ve witnessed its effects firsthand while in Denver in the summer of 2014.

What’s it feel like to see UK grime music is gaining popularity worldwide?
Obviously its exciting to see the world be able to experience grime music as if it was an entirely new thing. People could be critical of that because it has existed and people did experience it at that starting point. But for people to experience it as if it had just begun worldwide creates a really intense connection. Hopefully that will allow grime to become a fixture rather than a fad.

How excited were you after joining Big Dada’s roster?
I’m excited to bring some color to their roster with this EP. I think this EP must be really exciting for them in regards to its relative intensity to other things in their catalogue.

Who are you listening to these days and who are some of your influences?
Right now I’m listening to Grimes, Section Boyz and Young Thug. My music is influenced more so by firsthand experiences than by other music. However Calvin Harris circa I Created Disco and Ready for the Weekend, Timbaland, Jammer and The Prodigy are people who come to mind as personal influences.