Tastemakers: What's DJ Semtex listening to this week?

Chief heath DJ Semtex

Capital Xtra's DJ Semtex on Big Heath's Lonely EP...

I first saw Big Heath supporting Freddie Gibbs in November 2017. It was at one of those hardcore hip-hop nights at Koko in London where no one cared about the support artist. Heath immediately won the crowd over with his personality and delivered an exemplary set, but what struck me was his clarity, that he was performing to instrumentals, not the vocal versions. I was sold, and I played his debut track Switch Sides on air the following Friday. I was asked to open the main stage at Wireless festival and to give some new acts the chance to shine. I selected AJ & Deno, EO, Just Banco, and Big Heath.

I put him on first, and he chose to start his set with Lonely, which no one had heard or played. If any other artist had told me that they wanted to start their debut Wireless set with an unheard track on the main stage I really wouldn’t have taken them seriously… But it felt like a good idea because Lonely (from this month’s debut EP) is brilliant and I have faith in Heath. He shut down Wireless. He’s an artist that will be permanently on the road. He has a unique style and, if given the space to develop, he will hold his own corner within UK rap.


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