Based out of Little Rock, Arkansas and recently transplanted into Los Angeles, California, Kari Faux is an up and coming artist who is well beyond worthy of your ears’ time. And the self-proclaimed “Rap Game Daria” (yes, this is in reference to the MTV cartoon Daria, that ran from ‘97 to ‘02), stays true to her southern roots with a way of delivering lyrics comparable to a slow-burning candle. Pair that with a sarcastic, irreverent disposition and you’ve got yourself an intriguing figure in today’s somewhat saturated music industry. And it’s not as if she hasn’t garnered any acclaim whatsoever. Pitchfork put her 2014 EP, Laugh Now, Die Later on their list of most overlooked mixtapes of 2014 stating, “Laugh Now, Die Later, her brief, sharp, and mostly self-produced mixtape from earlier this summer, features a snarky and wise-cracking personality that feels unique, especially amongst the rap world.”
And let us not forget her run in with Childish Gambino. Not only did Donald Glover use Faux’s “No Small Talk” beat, but he kept her hook and verse on the remix too. Then furthermore included it on the track list for his STN MTN mixtape (2014). So, it’s fair to say that Faux is making her rounds. However, why is her music so appealing? Why is her persona so fascinating? This is what needs to be further delved into.
That advertisement comes from the Instagram account of Ben Sinclair, creator and star of the new HBO series High Maintenance (the show is fantastic and I highly recommend catching up on it, however that’s a discussion for another time). The song featured in the background is Faux’s “Supplier”, which in my belief is her upmost quintessential track. Not only is it most definitely flame emoji, but its smooth baseline and sporadic pings make the song almost hypnotic. It’s as if M.I.A. made a record from a slowed down “Pusherman” (yes, that is how groovy this song is). Nevertheless, “Supplier” is just a small part of what makes Ms. Faux so cool. It pushes along the Daria notion; it pushes along the vibe she tries to present in her music. In a 2015 interview with Complex Faux was quoted saying, “‘It’s weird to me that people like my stuff’ . . . ‘I’m so awkward. I’m just being goofy and you guys really like this!’” And hey, what’s not to like? She has the bravado of a seasoned vet that stands upon minimal production value. Her music isn’t what you’ll hear when you’re at a party or a club, but it’s the kind of sound that will send you into a different world when you’re in the car with it bumping through your sound system.
Her songs may express her boss-like persona as well as her distinctive way of mocking and looking down upon those unworthy of her regard. But it’s not aggressive in any way, shape, or form. The music is rather playful. Her prose is often times comedic which really aids the listenability, because it shows the listener that she's really just having fun out there. Which in turn makes her shit downright delightful. And her old-world take on music, the way she blends 90's Hip Hop and R&B, translates quite well visually. The video for “On the Internet” (below) contains an aesthetic akin to 2000’s AOL/Windows with its featuring of pop-up error messages and blue bordered windows. “No Small Talk”'s visual accompaniment looks like a home movie created by splicing random footage shot on a 2004 Nikon camcorder. And to conclude this point, the aforementioned “Supplier” is supported by a music video that seems to be solely influenced by Earth, Wind & Fire (just watch the music video for Boogie Wonderland).
Now, you may be wondering how you can listen to Kari. How much music is out there and where to find it. Well, her SoundCloud page (which boasts a solid 11.6K followers) can be found here. There you have a random collection of tracks as well as her full Laugh Now, Die Later mixtape. Also, her debut album, Lost En Los Angeles is provided below via Spotify.
As of now there are no tour dates listed, however you can follow her on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram so you can stay as up to date as humanly possible, without being a creep. So, get to listening, and get to following! Because Kari Faux is coming in hot, and your ears deserve this.