Surya Sen channels ‘70s funk into the spirit of rave culture on “Earn It”
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  • Post published:25/02/2022
  • Post last modified:25/02/2022

Given his penchant for taking the road less travelled, it makes sense that Surya Sen’s namesake is a Bangladeshi teacher turned revolutionary. The British-Bengali producer and rapper is in the midst of a transformation of his own and in “Earn It”, he’s documenting the relentless pace of the capital that’s pushing him.

Landing off the back of a collaboration with NiNE8 Collective rapper Bone Slim and a remix from DJ Boring, it comes as no surprise that the London-based artist is stitching together the motifs of his favourite sounds. It’s part of a genre-agnostic approach that’s become one of the few certainties in an unpredictable journey thus far through house, garage, and hip-hop adjacent cuts. This attitude comes into full focus in a throbbing bassline that shares DNA with that of LCD Soundsystem’s “Daft Punk Is Playing At My House” and is sampled from NSG’s track and namesake “Earn It”.

Feeling like a tension headache you can dance to, it’s his boots to the ground sensibility and matter of fact delivery that keeps Surya Sen’s experience in arms reach on the track. Likewise, moving at his own pace on an instrumental that reflects the urgency of financial security in a global pandemic, Surya is proving an act capable of seamlessly blending conflicting ideas.

Breaking down the motivation for the track, Surya Sen says, “’Earn It’ is a big moment for me. It’s the final single before my mixtape comes out and it sums up all of the blood, sweat and tears that defined 2021 and the mentality I felt I needed to survive it, over a big distorted bass line. It’s about hard graft in London and doing what you can month on month to survive and thrive in the city. My first mixtape At What Cost? is set in July/Aug 2021 and centres around one night in post lockdown London. It details the feelings and emotions that arise throughout the night and a sonic and social commentary of London around me. It’s almost time to share it with the world and I can’t wait for you to hear it.”

Landing ahead of a thirteen-track tape that features his own production and vocals while wrestling with identity and politics, “Earn It” is the final taster of a project putting his future into his own hands.

“Earn It” is out now, with the new mixtape At What Cost? set for release on 15 April via Skint Records. Find Surya Sen on Instagram.

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