Over the month of October, 070 Shake, the New Jersey rapper who plays as one of the leading front women of the 070 collective, recorded all but two of the tracks on Glitter, out Jan 26.
“We just wanted to do whatever we wanted and we wanted to be able to drop it whenever we wanted,” the 20-year-old rapper told Billboard this month of the 12-track EP, which was produced by The Kompetition. “This project is really about being in a dark place and finding yourself and figuring it out. It’s about being in the lowest of lows type of shit.”
Shake had never recorded a song before 2015. Though she wrote poetry as a way to work out her own emotions and express herself through words, she had never done anything over music. But late that year she recorded “Proud” and “Swervin.” The tracks would catch not only the attention of YesJulz, who would later sign on to be her manager, but also a three man group of producers working out of Star Coud Studios in Union Center, New Jersey.
“We actually came together at Star Cloud studios almost three years ago,” Ether Phoenix said of The Kompetition, the three-headed team who produced Glitter and produce most of 070’s music. “Razsy Beats was one of my lead engineers and J Sebastian was one of his friends. They would just be in the studio making beats all night long and I saw that drive and determination.”
“Together we just created this new sound and that kind of all springboarded when 070 hopped on and we started to cultivate a sound together.”
Though Shake is no doubt the most prominent member of the 070 collective, which borrows its name from the New Jersey area code, the group is currently about 11-odd members across artists and producers. Glitter represents The Kompetition sound at its truest.
“It’s not necessarily polished,” Ether explained, noting that the project is a mix of electronic, hip-hop and rock influences. “This is how we build: with no rules. We aren’t polishing these records to a spit shine, we just want people to feel again.”
And it also represents Shake at her truest.
“Working with The Kompetition is where you’re going to get the most authentic Shake,” she said. “That’s where you’re going to get the realest Shake and the weirdest Shake.” Case in point: “Zombie Girl” which the artist says isn’t what people are used to.
The tape is a journey. It starts with a frank intro titled “I Laugh When I’m With Friends But I’m Sad When I’m Alone,” released today, which talks about the realities of depression and finding yourself. It was in fact written in the wake of Lil Peep’s death.
“I didn’t know him at all,” Shake said of the 21-year-old talent. “Unfortunately, I got to know more about him and his story after passing but he reminded me of me in a way. Seeing people be insensitive towards him because he was an addict made me feel like I should speak up for him and show people that sometimes when you always want to be numb, it’s because you’re feeling some sort of pain.”
The track no doubt relies heavily on on Shake’s history in poetry as does much of her oeuvre.
“[Because I wrote poetry] my lyrics have a lot of meaning,” Shake said. It’s not just you’re hearing music but you have to really listen to the lyrics and take stuff from what I’m saying.”
And she plans to keep saying things. This collaborative EP with The Kompetition will be followed by Shake’s own debut work Yellow Girl.
“I was kind of in a funk when I was writing Yellow Girl,” the GOOD music signee said. “I worked on Yellow Girl when I was in that phase where I was doing all the stuff that I talked about in Glitter that I wanted to break free form. It’s kind of backwards on how my life was really going.” With all of the new music there also is possibly even a tour in the works before the year’s end.
“Last year was about me being patient and waiting to release everything,” Shake said. “This year is really my real introduction to the world.”
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