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Azealia Banks Has Pop At XL Recordings
The Quietus , January 5th, 2012 13:32

No time for label based in "bumblefrickin' nowhere"

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Hotly-tipped Azealia Banks is not afraid of speaking her mind, as NME found when she took the piss out of the Cool List she topped, and Kreayshawn has similarly found herself the victim of a (subsequently retracted) going-over. Now, our friends The Daily Swarm have spotted that XL Recordings have been delivered a slice of box-fresh shoe pie. As she says, "I'm the rap Larry David. Always complaining."

As Banks told Self Titled magazine, XL were initially interested in her music, and gave her a development deal after Diplo started talking about her. Said Banks, "the original idea was to have me work with Richard Russell... Richard was cool, but as soon as I didn't want to use his beats, it got real sour. He wound up calling me 'amateur' and shit, and the XL interns started talking shit about me. It just got real fucking funny. I was like, 'I didn't come here for a date. I came here to cut some fucking records.' I got turned off on the music industry and disappeared for a bit. I went into a bit of a depression." Oof!

She then had a chat with the BBC, where she shone more light on what happened. "It was almost the day I signed to XL that they started checking out. There were a good seven to eight months where I was just sending them texts and no-one would say anything or pick up the phone or respond to my emails. Nothing. And it started to ruin me. So I started harassing Richard. Like, 'Dude, I'm going to chop your neck off. Answer my emails!'"

She added: "I was like, this is not what I worked so hard my entire life to do - to be rejected by some English guy in West Bumblefrickin’ nowhere London, telling me I'm amateur or something like that. So I just said, 'Screw you!'"

In the same interview, Banks spoke highly of another Englishman, producer Paul Epworth, with whom she's now working. "I'm going to drag another side of Paul out," says Banks of the studio collaboration. "I'm really DIY, and he's very polished. But you're definitely going see a darker side of Paul and a more refined side of me. That's what it has to be about."

anon
Jan 5, 2012 6:49pm

Thank god for the internet. She wouldn't have had a second chance without the free distribution system. She's so confident it's amazing. When I was her age I was nowhere near that. Great role model. Go Azealia!

Like Richard Russell's ideas though, always come across brilliantly. Very inspiring Twitter feed. There must be a reason XL is successful, you can't deny that. Possibly does have to do with quality control at some level.

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Nero
Jan 5, 2012 7:20pm

Well said Azealia! I knew an act signed with XL that were treated dreadfully, and it was plain to see that there were others on that label in exactly the same boat. What excuses do you have Russell? We are all ears

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Dan B
Jan 6, 2012 11:13am

Major label artist treated shoddily = not news.

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anon
Feb 7, 2012 10:42pm

In reply to anon:

she's an idiot who can barely form a sentence. "role model?"

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