Channel Tres challenges black, male stereotypes in his ‘Sexy Black Timberlake’ clip
Returning to Australian shores this July is none other than Compton-born artist, CHANNEL TRES. He’s had an explosive 12 months that saw him support both Robyn and Vince Staples around the US, play a couple of festivals and shows in Australia and release one hell of a debut EP. He even found the time to do a quick shoot with us last year while he was in town.
He’ll be back in town for Splendour In The Grass next month and today, not only has he given us a new track, video clip AND news of his forthcoming EP, Black Moses, but he’s also announced two headline sideshows in Sydney and Melbourne.
The EP will be out on August 2 worldwide via the good people at Godmode, the LA-based tastemaker team who have previously introduced us to the likes of Yaeji and Shamir.
The first single to be taken from the EP is ‘Sexy Black Timberlake’, and in true Channel Tres style, the track not only celebrates his blackness, but it’s also a bonafide slapper of a track.
Fusing deep house, West Coast rap and that instantly recognisable smooth, baritone voice, ‘Sexy Black Timberlake’ uses deep, bassy tones as the basis for its foundations. Vocal chants are added every now and then for emphasis, while the instrumental plays with claps, varying sound effects and high-pitched synths for contrast.
The lyrics see Channel grappling with some of the issues he’s been facing as a young black man on the rise. He plays on stereotypes black men in music tend to face, where they’re portrayed as either violent or a sex object. The track focuses on being made to feel like the latter, and the clip draws on this for a juxtaposing of both comfortable and uncomfortable scenes for Channel.
Catch him while you can, it’s going to be a huge year for him. Black Moses is out August 2 via Godmode.
CHANNEL TRES AUSTRALIAN/NZ TOUR DATES
Tues 16 July
Lansdowne Hotel, Sydney
Fri 19 July
The Espy (Gershwin Room), Melbourne
Sat 20 July
Splendour In The Grass, Byron Bay
Sun 21 July
Neck of the Woods, Auckland, NZ
Words by CAITLIN MEDCALF