Far-out take on the new wave of instrumental grime
US East Coast producer Harrison King, born in Birmingham, Alabama. Having released some relatively straightforward club tracks as William Skeng (including ‘Visit Me’ on the influential genre primer ‘Boxed Vol 1’), he’s since reverted to his original moniker of Sharp Veins, delving into more abstract electronica alongside his outsider’s take on grime.
Why Sharp Veins?
Grime’s regional insularity – with an emphasis not just on a particular city but also on specific postcodes – was always one of its defining features. Stripped of British accents and London slang, it’s become a global concern, but as a genre led by beat-makers rather than MCs. Foreign producers like Sharp Veins are dissecting the template, using only those elements that interest them, and bringing fresh perspectives to the table.
King serves up a fascinating mix of influences. His crucible contains everything from drone and ambient to Southern hip hop and UK bass music. He’s young and still finding his feet, but it’s been fascinating to watch his style develop over the past year via a drip feed of radio slots and Soundcloud detritus. Now it all seems to be coalescing into something more complete.
Tell Us More
Sharp Veins’ first physical release, the ‘Inbox Island’ EP, has found a home at Irish label Glacial Sound, who have also released ace 12s from Murlo and Rabit. The record is surprisingly glossy in places, with textures that feel closer to Rustie’s ‘Glass Swords’ than your usual grime palette.
Like the dark, unexplored corners of the internet, King’s soundscapes can feel eerily inert – there’s plenty of motion but not necessarily any clear direction. Just another confusing piece in the Sharp Veins puzzle, I guess. ‘Inbox Island’ is holidaying for the digital age. Escapism via your browser window.
‘Inbox Island’ is out on Glacial Sound