20 Jun 2019

VIDEO PREMIERE: Unchained XL ‘2 To The 6’

From RNZ Music, 10:00 am on 20 June 2019

RNZ Music is proud to present the new single and video from British-born Nigerian/New Zealand hip hop artist Unchained XL.

Unchained XL is a UK-born Nigerian hip hop artist and producer with a unique, afrocentric sound.

The Auckland-based musician born Hugh Ozumba started out as the frontman of metal band East of Eden, making the switch to hip hop in 2016. Since then Hugh's released two top-notch EPs and a bunch of excellent singles.

He makes music that’s a blend of afrofunk, afrobeat and hip hop, using a combination of live instruments and synths. UXL calls his sound “afro-roots hip-hop”.

'2 To The 6' features Unchained XL rapping about a range of topics for 64 bars. The song’s cryptic title refers to the mathematical expression "2 raised to the 6th power” (which is 64 of course!).

The video was shot by fellow Auckland musician and creative Geoff Ong.

As well as covering issues of racism, '2 To The 6' addresses government corruption and economic injustice, he includes references to pop icons and prominent figures such as Nigerian filmmaker Genevieve Nnaji (Lionheart), British Nigerian afrobeats artist Burna Boy, inventor Thomas Edison, and Nigerian Kiwi MMA fighter Israel “Stylebender” Adesanya .

UXL is inspired by afrobeat legend and political icon Fela Kuti, as well as artists including Ghanian rapper M.anifest, American afrobeat band Antibalas and 90s hip hop veterans A Tribe Called Quest.

  • VIDEO PREMIERE: Unchained XL ‘Weight On My Bars, Pt. IV’
  • VIDEO: Unchained XL performs 'Weight on My Bars' live at RNZ
  • First song: Unchained XL Live in studio
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