Hailing from New York, K Flay has seen her star rise considerably after putting out a number of mixtapes, with her most recent Eyes Shut released earlier this year.
With the rapper currently working on her debut album proper, we gave her a call to get ourselves better acquainted and find out what else we can expect from her this year.
What were you up to before we called?
"I'm working on tracks for the album so I've been a bit locked in my cage, but it's a fun cage with many toys, so it's good."
How well do you know London?
"This is my fifth time or something. The other times have been for just a hot minute. I was here for a bit last year - I was finishing my EP over here which I just put out a couple of weeks ago. I had some really amazing scrambled eggs yesterday - that was pretty awesome. They were like orange, it was really bizarre. Very European. American scrambled eggs are too fluffy or something, do you know what I mean?"
They sound expensive.
"I was in the mood, I was hungry. I would have paid £20 for that. It was £7 and I got toast and sausage and scrambled eggs. That's not so bad."
"Okay, I agree, London is too expensive. That's my one criticism of London. Where I live in New York is expensive too, but it's nothing compared to here. The cabs here are insane - it makes you want to walk everywhere!"
So your new mixtape came out a couple of weeks ago; were you pleased with it?
"I wanted to put out something that was kinda coherent thematically and felt like it was a certain vibe. I think hopefully the sound of what I'm doing is maturing a bit. This EP feels like the next step after I put out a mixtape last year called I Stopped Caring in '96 and that was the first step in my solidifying what I was doing. This EP just feels like another movement forward."
Listen to K. Flay's 'Eyes Shut' EP below:
How would you describe your sound?
"It's definitely rap and hip-hop in its foundation but there are elements of electronic and indie music too. I fell into doing music very randomly by basically having a conversation when I was in school and it sort of led to me doing this more seriously. By virtue of that, I don't really have a ton of boundaries or guidelines for the kind of music I make. I don't really even know what I'm doing. I'm just randomly pressing buttons seeing what happens!"
The white female rapper is a difficult area to crack. Have you come up against many difficulties?
"I think people are often a little bit sceptical at first but then usually they'll check out a show or see a video of the live performance and kind of understand that there's not a gimmick to it. I weirdly figured out that I liked rapping. There's a lot of interesting wordplay you can do with rap as opposed to other genres. That really drew me to it. I love words and I love word games and I like doing crossword puzzles."
Are you very good at crosswords then?
"Hell, yeah! I get so frustrated with all my friends. It's funny, it has nothing to do how smart you are. I know geniuses who are horrible at crossword puzzles."
Are there any other women in hip-hop community you look up to?
"I grew up as a Missy fan. I think Missy Elliott always was someone who just did something very left of centre yet really accessible and appealing on a wide scale which is super difficult to do. I just love that she came out of the gate with a super wacky image and not really giving a f**k what she looked like or what people thought of her."
You said you fell into music by accident. What else would you have done?
"I don't know - and I'm always disturbed for that to be my answer to that question. I'm not sure what I would have done. I was thinking about going to graduate school and just continuing to study and then figuring it out later. Just perpetually postponing the decision."
When can we expect your debut album?
"It's definitely a work in progress at the moment but I hope to put it out this summer. The EPs I've released are sort of shaping what it will sound like. I want to put something out that has a clear and defined message - not just a bunch of songs for the sake of it."
K Flay's new mixtape Eyes Shut is out now. Her debut album follows later this year.