Meet Contradash - Photo #1

Working from home has become normalized under quarantine, but contradash has been making music from his bedroom since day one. 

Growing up in a turbulent household – plagued by frequent moves, school transfers and a periodically imprisoned father – the 22-year-old emerging emo-pop artist turned to graphic design and music as creative outlets. He spent countless hours watching production tutorials on YouTube and recording his verses on GarageBand. But ironically, it was graphic design that got him his first break in the music industry. 

In 2017, he won A$AP Ferg’s design competition, got to meet the rapper backstage at a show, and was eventually hired by him. Although this connection was a building block for his music career, the online friendship contradash struck up with the members of Florida based rap group Backhouse through designing their cover art was far more important. 

After graduating high school in 2018, contradash flew to Florida to meet up with members of Backhouse and several other internet friends he’d made through graphic design. It was his first time in Florida, and he had to rely on his online connections for a place to sleep, couch surfing at several friends’ houses including fellow artists ALX, ripMattBlack and Nate Traveller. During this time, contradash kept building on his songwriting with former Backhouse member Dominic Fike, who was at the time caught in a bidding war between the major labels and was beginning his ascent towards pop stardom. 

Fike taught contradash how to use Logic and helped him improve his songwriting structure and lyricism – something that contradash says  “he still be teaching me shit to this day I swear to god.” Two years after his time in Florida, contradash finds himself in a similar position to the one Fike was in back in 2018.  His single “Yo-Yo”, released last year, caught the attention of record labels, earning him a deal with Interscope. Having now released his latest single “favorite color,” along with its music video, he is almost set to release his debut EP All-Star.

 

An early adopter of the work-from-your-room mentality, contradash’s music is ahead of the curve. His approach has been described as genre-bending, as he freely mixes elements of emo, pop and rap to create an intoxicating cocktail of melodic vocal hooks over layers of hazy backing vocals and catchy beats.

His tendency for lovelorn melodic hooks is reminiscent of emo rap pioneers like Juice Wrld and Lil Peep. In fact, he even worked with Russ Chell, who produced Juice Wrld’s hit “Legends” on production for his track “White Lies.” However, instead of leaning all the way into an emo rap sound, contradash asked Chell to come up with a beat reminiscent of Kelly Clarkson’s 2000s smash hit “Since You Been Gone.” The result is a track based around catchy melodic lead guitar, a punchy beat and an infectious hook, is as close to early 2000s pop punk as it is emo rap, preventing any effort to put contradash’s music in a box.

 

Contradash - White Lie

While his music career now takes up most of his time, that doesn’t mean contradash’s background in graphic design has gone completely to waste. His skillset has translated nicely into set design in several of his self-directed music videos. In the video for “Blocked,” contradash is seen dancing around in a room covered top to bottom in pastel hues and heart shaped balloons, while in the “petal pickin” music video he floats around a pool in a pink donut over sparkling blue water. 

Contradash’s next big goal will be translating his vision into a live show once the pandemic is over.  “My main artistic goal right now is to put together a great show,” he says. He’s already had Russ Chell teach him to play the guitar while he was working on “White Lie,” so he can add that to his live show. While contradash has been delayed from going on tour because of the pandemic, he has put the time to good use by doing what he does best, sitting in his room and writing songs.  This should give fans plenty to look out for, even after he releases his debut EP All-Star in a few months.

Be sure to follow contradash on Instagram, Twitter, and Spotify to keep up-to-date on his latest tracks, including his new EP All-Star which will be out in a few months. And keep reading for an exclusive interview with the artist about his upcoming projects, musical inspirations, and the story behind his new song and music video “favorite color.”

 

Who is contradash?

 

 

Who are your biggest musical inspirations?

 

 

What’s the story behind your new song “favorite color”?

 

 

What’s next for contradash?