Calling Los Angeles, California his home, BLXST is in the midst of his breakout moment. Following a 2019 that produced impressive singles like “Falling” and “Hurt,” BLXST entered 2020 and turned things up a notch. Beginning with features with fellow West coasters like Bino Rideaux and Mozzy, BLXST slowly gained the attention of multiple ears thanks to his buttery hooks and crisp pen.
Soon, BLXST was ready to make his official entrance into the music world with a new project. He inked a deal with Red Bull Records, one he described as a “one project EP” deal could continue onto further projects depending on the turnout of his debut.
At the top of September, BLXST debuted the new project, No Love Lost. The eight track effort saw him balancing his tunnel-visioned approach to bettering his lifestyle with the needs of his love interest. A few weeks removed from the project, we chopped it up with BLXST to talk about No Love Lost, being imperfect, his rise to fame, and more.
With everything going on in the world, how have you been holding up?
Just taking it day-by-day, trying to practice things that keep my mental straight. Some of those things are recording of course, playing video games, and just staying out of the way in general.
You’re a couple weeks removed from your new project No Love Lost, how are you feeling with responses from fans so far?
The response has been way more than I expected honestly. Publications that have been tapping in, notable artists that have been reaching out and giving me their feedback just gave me that extra boost of confidence to keep my head down and just keep doing what I’m doing.
I just wanna commend you for creating this strong body of work, in what’s probably been one of the most difficult times the world has gone through at once with the pandemic. What were some of the difficulties you faced in making and preparing the project over the past few months?
The recording process wasn’t much of a change because I record at home mostly. I would say, the difficult part was getting the visuals together, trying to abide by the regulations due to COVID of course. Creatively, it was a box that we had to create in, so I would say the visuals.
You’ve already got two videos out from the new project, one for “Overrated” and another for “No Love Lost.” What made you decide to create a building narrative within these videos?
That was intentional. I wanted the videos to tie into each other, but I also wanted the video to be able to stand alone as well. Originally, the concept came from making bullet points as far as what the project is talking about and what the meaning behind No Love Lost is. I wanted to display all those bullets throughout the story. Some of those bullets are disloyalty, grinding, the love life that I’m experiencing on a day-to-day basis. Really just maximize the visual aesthetic of the audio and just bring it to life.
On “Overrated” you ask for loyalty over love, a concept that seems to run throughout the album. So I have to ask, what does this title No Love Lost mean to you in terms of this project?
Another term for “no love lost” for me is “no hard feelings.” So it’s just really accepting the fact that it’s okay to be selfish for yourself. Sometimes, your loved ones may not understand the journey that you’re on and the sacrifices that you have to make, but at the same time, you owe these type of things to yourself no matter what goal it is that you’re setting. I just want to be the best version of myself and I owe that to myself.
Staying on “Overrated,” which is the second single off the project, we hear the Donell Jones sample on it. Why’d you feel it was perfect for this song?
I just be getting inspired by scrolling on YouTube and just looking at old 90s videos and that one stuck out to me because it brought me back to that time frame. My mom and my dad used to bump that specific album all the time, so when I came across that song, I was like “Damn, how can I flip this in a dope way and still make it fall under the lines of what I’m talking about on the project?” It was a challenge for me of course because that’s one of them songs that you don’t want to mess up. I was glad that when I did it, Donell Jones even posted the song so that was a stamp of approval for me.
Describe the man, whether it be yourself or someone you created, that the narrative on No Love Lost is based on.
I would just say someone who’s imperfect, but also learning to accept that. Me as a Virgo, I’m a perfectionist. Sometimes I beat myself up and I forget that it’s okay to not be perfect and it’s okay to express that as well, which is why that title resonates with me because it’s a message to myself. There’s “no love lost,” at the end of the day, you owe this to yourself, don’t let yourself down. You can’t make somebody else happy without making yourself happy.
Do you feel like after creating this project and going through whatever personal experiences were tied into it, do you feel like you’re approaching that understanding of it’s okay to not be perfect?
In certain ways. Somebody asked me before, “Do you believe in happy endings?” That question threw me off because I’m like, “Damn, when I listen to the project, it feels like there’s no happy ending.” So I would say it’s more of a therapeutic peace. Of course I still go through those stages, but it’s more so like “Lemme get this off my chest so I can be aware of it at least.” So when I do come across these challenges I can practice different ways of overcoming it.
You end the project with “Hurt,” a song where you’ve been done wrong by close friends, just to bring it back to the top with “No Love Lost,” and the theme of no hard feelings, just to call back into the project’s story. So I’m wondering if you intend to have No Love Lost be somewhat of a circulating narrative?
Nah, that’s a great point. It wasn’t intentional, like as you said, the sequence of the project starts with a similar topic of “Hurt.” It wasn’t intentional, but I guess it just came out that way because that was the mode I was in. I feel like it was a problem that hasn’t been solved yet. These are my emotions that I’m still dealing with to this day.
I was hopeful that “Fallin,” one of my favorites records by you, would end up here with “Hurt,” with both of them being singles from last year. So I gotta ask, did you want or plan this to be a longer project?
I wanted to just give enough to where people can understand that I’m — I want to start a thing where I consistently put out quality over quantity. I feel like this is an appetizer — an EP — to give people a good first impression of who BLXST is as an artist, as a producer, and just keep them on their toes wanting more.
Where’s the name BLXST come from?
Originally, I just made it up when I was younger with my friends just playing around. Later down the line, I fell in love with it because after having my son, I kind of looked at it as me being a superhero, so I just ran with it. At some point I wanted to change it, but I was like nah imma keep it.
I know clubs and performing venues are shut down for the most part, but what’s one song you can’t wait to perform for fans?
I wanna perform “Wrong Or Right.” The numbers on that been crazy, which I didn’t really expect and I feel like the people gravitate to that record heavily so yeah that song.
What song from this project is your favorite or resonates with you the most?
Sonically, “Be Alone” is my favorite, but as far as what resonates with me personally, it would have to be “Hurt.” Just off the expression I was trying to get off my chest. It was bar-for-bar really how I was feeling, so that was a big record for me.
And “Hurt” is really the record that boosted your career. What was the moment for you when you felt like things were changing and on the up-and-up now?
It was the moment when Justine Skye posted it on her Instagram, which was big for me. I didn’t know of anybody notable to that stature of course, but that was just my reassurance.
You’ve put out dope songs with Bino Rideaux and Mozzy this year, who else can we expect you to work with in the near future?
Yeah, I’ve definitely locked in a couple features for a deluxe that I’m planning on right now. I don’t wanna give out no names, I wanna keep it a surprise, but definitely locked in a couple features with a few notable artists that I plan on putting on a deluxe for No Love Lost.
And how soon can we expect that deluxe if you can say?
Hopefully, by the bottom of October.