Back in September, UK star Knucks released his second studio album London Class, a conceptual 12-track body of work with additional assists from Sam Wise, KXYZ, kadiata, and more. Just before Halloween, the rapper revealed a new visual from the project for “Standout,” which features Loyle Carner and Venna. Produced by Knucks himself, he and Carner sling clever bars over a jazzy backdrop with the aid of Venna on saxophone:
“I stand out like a black man in Kazakhstan, from when men get bored at if they ain’t have plans, as that stands, I know the ropes like my backhand, ain’t trynna sit here chasing ghosts, like I’m PacMan, really from the grass roots of soil.../”
The visual comes courtesy of LX, and shows the artists rapping in their element, from the estate to the chicken shop, alongside other beautiful Black individuals — some of whom don caps and gowns to add to the track’s subject matter. All-in-all, it’s definitely the type of clip that can provoke different levels of interpretation, whether that was the intent or not.
In a recent interview with Clash, Knucks further explained how “Standout” came to fruition:
“That was the first time I was in the studio with Loyle Carner and it came about naturally. I remember in the session; I made the instrumental within the first five minutes ... It was good because it was my way of getting to know Loyle as well. Everything was natural and you can tell from the lyrics what we’re talking about is what was discussed on the day.”
Prior to the independently released London Class, Knucks released Nrg 105 via Island in 2019, which boasted 10 cuts and a couple of features from Oscar #Worldpeace and Wretch 32. More recently, he also teamed up with emil for the single “Beg To Differ.”
Press play on both Knucks’ “Standout” video and London Class below. Hopefully, we’ll be hearing more from him in the future.