Ernest Hemingway once said, “There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at the typewriter and bleed.” Angel Haze opens another vein with every song.
Throughout her career, the Detroit-born rapper/singer/songwriter has committed to unrelenting honesty. The struggles of growing up in a poor, single-parent household, the residual effects of a childhood spent in a religious cult, the forever haunting pains of being molested—Haze has never omitted the intense and uncomfortable details of her life.
Following a flurry of critically-acclaimed mixtapes (e.g. R eservation an d Classick), Haze signed to Island/Republic and released her debut album Dirty Gold (2014). An auspicious display of her deleterious double-time flow, powerful songwriting, and disarming vocal chops, Dirty Gold charted in the US and the UK. That same year, Haze received award nominations from BET (Best Female Hip Hop Artist) and MTV.
In 2015, after a split with her label, a highly-publicized breakup, and a near-fatal drug overdose, Haze independently released the TK Kayembe-produced B ack to the Woods. Heralded by fans and critics alike, the album features even greater depth. On songs like “Detox” and “The Woods,” Haze shifts effortlessly between soul-stirring chanteuse and mic shredding lyricist. A document of lost love and the abyss of self-destruction, it remains among the most accomplished work in a stellar back catalog.
Haze’s forthcoming third album, Roses Will Rise Again, marks another turn in her ever-evolving career. Lead single “Resurrection” is, fittingly, unlike anything Haze has done before. Backed by poignant strings and punishing percussion, she details the agonies and triumphs of the recent past with unwavering swagger and passionate crooning. In 2017, she will blossom once more. Listeners new and old will find comfort in her singular writing and delivery, her cut-to-the-marrow transparency. She will continue to bleed for them, for herself.
Q & A
- What is essential for you to create?
I need space and time that allows for reflection. Freedom is important, so I usually need to be alone—able to refine my energy, and take into account all the things I meditate upon daily. From there I choose a focal point and then I hone in on it.
- What does it mean to be original?
I think originality is simply being uncompromising in who you are, what you say, and how you feel. How you relay things says a lot about your person. Everyone is original, but not everyone is unique.
- How do you remain authentic and true to yourself?
Thats simple, I dont do anything I dont feel. I dont do anything that doesnt satisfy me inwardly. If it doesnt add to my person, it takes away from it. I yearn for a wholeness, for a completeness that I cannot get by sacrificing the most crucial and indicative bits of myself.