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Label Biography

GAIKA isn’t the type to be boxed in. Since Machine, his debut mixtape appeared in 2015, critics have struggled to stick a tidy name onto his music and art. His darkly magnetic sound evolved through follow–up mixtape Security and EPs SPAGHETTO and The Spectacular Empire on Warp Records, building expectations for what is to come in 2018.

GAIKA shape-shifts across not only musical markers but disciplines. He settles on the term ‘ghetto-futurism’ to encompass what he does. It’s easier than waiting for the latest “dancehall–meets–rave” label and allows him to build on afro-futurism to make art steeped in blackness that “harks back. It’s like the ghost in the machine. If you listen to grime, trap, dancehall, hip-hop, reggae, there’s this glory in the face of death, a celebration of the impermanence of life.” That kernel of emotion, played out by artists using the latest technology to self–produce, underpins ghetto–futurism. “Ghetto’ isn’t just to do with black people,” he says, “but it’s all the people who live under the boot, the 99%, and how we end up reveling in what other people deem the shadow.”


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