Enigmatic Brisbane vocalist and musician, Val Flynn, continues to bring the heat in his emerging career, with the release today of his new EP, Cocky, out now on TRENCH Records.
Flynn, who draws musical influence from the peak ’90s and ’00s rap, hip hop and r’n’b he grew up on and uses those genres as a lens through which he expresses his identity as a Queer and Indigenous artist, has quickly earned a reputation creating some of the most distinctive music in the modern Australian scene.
That’s vibrantly on display on the lead single from Cocky, ‘On My Mind,’ a collaboration with Sydney producer and TRENCH Records head honcho Moonbase, along with a guest writing credit from Brisbane emcee, Jesswar. The glamorous new track finds all three in fine form, and is a show stopper on an EP full of bangers.
Jesswar, who herself has been a leading voice in the alternative hip hop community in Australia, was actually a major part of the Cocky EP across the board, as Flynn explains.
“The Cocky EP, I started working on around October last year,” says Flynn. “I ended up going to NYC in the early months of 2019 with Jesswar. We ended up going to dinner with her partner and my other mate and then dinner got lit so then ended up on the lower east side at a dive Irish bar taking shots and just having a blast while there was a blizzard happening just outside. When the bar was closing we then had an idea to try and find a studio… Cut to us calling studios in the Bronx and Brooklyn until we found one! We laid the demo tracks in a bedroom while everyone drank around us. It was what dreams are made of to be honest.”
Alongside ‘On My Mind,’ Jesswar also co-wrote on ‘Pull Up.’ “She had this idea from when we were in NYC for me to just become this gangster rapper. I grew up on nothing but rap, hip hop and r’n’b pop. So, whenever I feel safe enough (which she made me feel) I’m down to show how hood I truly am and where I come from. The streets raised me!”
Other stand outs like ‘Paparazzi’ came direct from Flynn himself and are a perfect slice of his unique approach to contemporary pop.
“‘Paparazzi’ is a song I wrote and recorded in Brisbane when I was dating this guy who I thought was the one… He wasn’t. The song is basically a journey of what it feels like with Instagram etc and how people feel entitled to watch, comment and talk about strangers online. It’s kind of a fuck you to the naysayers and a hello to my future husband, lol. The track was remixed by and incredible up and coming DJ/Producer JamesJamesJames. He really went to town on the track and took it to a place where I dreamed it being.”
Val Flynn’s music is provocative, fierce and more connected to the realities of society than most pop music would ever dream of or even dare to be. Make sure you devour the Cocky EP as soon as you can.
Val Flynn’s New EP Cocky I Is Out Now Via
Dew Process / TRENCH Records / Universal Music Australia