This isn’t just any old rap from Emay (a.k.a. Mubarik Adams), a hip-hop artist from Hamilton, Ontario. His latest single, ‘Israfil’ (or “angel’s trumpet”) is so named for an angel in Islamic tradition that blows his horn to signify the day of resurrection. The angel’s trumpet (also the name of a poisonous flower) is a metaphor for life, in that, as the artist says, “its contents may be ugly at times but there’s a bizarre sense of beauty to all of its chaos.” The track, in which Emay speaks of the blind race for material success and the struggle for survival in a crazy world, includes a clip from American author, feminist and social activist Bell Hooks.
This fine artist is as eloquent in his explanation of his music as he is in the music itself, which blazes with the intensity of insightful social commentary and poignant self-awareness.
“Israfil or ‘angels trumpet’ is a track in which I explore my conflict with society’s expectations upon me as an artist and an everyday worker trying to ‘make it.'” – Emay
This powerful song is the first single from his self-produced debut album, Ilah, due out later this year. On the album, he explores his personal struggle with being a Muslim and the concept of God. As he explains it, “The entire project is essentially my development in thought from early life to now. Trying to find the Objective. In the sense that I’m searching for purpose in trying to see the world more objectively from a subjective standpoint.”