The night I chat to Popcaan there's a big album launch party in New York in his honour, but he's roadside in Jamaica (he doesn't have a visa to the States), on his way to the weekly clash night he puts on. "We pon di main road now if you hear vehicles driving fast, y'kna?" he tells me, before greeting passers-by with, "Why pree? Auntie, wha gwan?" Despite being hailed as Jamaica's biggest new dancehall star, he's clearly still a low-key local boy. The new album shows off his sense of humour, his wicked way with words and his ability to put out a sex-laden party track (singing "Ya pussy pretty like the building dem a Canada" in Love Yuh Bad), but there's a core of socially conscious anthems here that also establish him as a sensitive and smart singjay for the ghetto, most especially its youth.


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you can check out Popcaan's music here, and follow him on instagram.

words: Stuart Brumfitt // photos: Olivia Seally