BBC Radio 1xtra StageFriday5:10 pm
Essentially: it’s the time of the super-producer. And if there’s one man behind the boards in the United Kingdom who is deserving of a similar status to those previous names, it’s Steel Banglez – a producer whose discography reads like a checklist of hot names in the UK scene, running from Wiley and Big H to newer names like J Hus and MoStack.
When it comes to the latter two acts, Banglez is in part responsible for the afrotrap genre that’s sweeping across London and beyond. He describes himself as something of a scientist, successfully forging elements of the UK’s musical history into a brand new sound. His latest track “Bad” – which boasts an impressive line-up of Yungen, MoStack, Mr Eazi and Not3s – is a perfect example, with YouTube commentators quick to pick up and note his recognisable production. It’s also the moment when, after years of hard work, everything has smoothly come together.
You could call the Steel Banglez journey a spiritual one. At the least his logo is an image of The Flower Of Life, a sacred geometric symbol that symbolises the start of all things. It’s fitting because as much as Banglez is making music, he’s also giving back to the world too; his charity, Wishing Well, is an initiative that aims to provide eco wells to deprived areas across India and Africa. There’s also the beginnings of a label, Gifted Records, the first UK rap label on Warner Brothers. Ultimately, with these three acts in the past, Banglez is starting a new journey – one of his own, where he’s standing at the forefront of a UK sound, a new super-producer in his own right as well as philanthropist and label owner, all while wearing those steel bangles on his wrist.