Sydney-based rapper ZEKIEL has graced us once again, this time with "Like Gold", a relaxed hip hop track facing the heavy weighted topic of alcohol addiction. A mellowed journey into the mind and introspective reflection of the alternative pop artist, "Like Gold" is a calming lofi voyage, comparable to the styles of Post Malone and The Weekend.
"Like Gold" is the follow up to Zekiel's previous release of 2020, "Energy", which was co-written and produced by Taka Perry who has previously worked with the likes of M-Phazes, Mick Schultz, Max Frost, and Ruel and "9 Days Straight", which was praised by Music Feeds, PileRats, Fen Hong Se.
"For so long, I identified myself as the 'party guy' happy to shrug responsibility off and escape from reality at any opportunity," said Zekiel. "I thought I had the weight of the world on my shoulders and I felt like I was alone in that regard. I wasn't, but I felt that way for sure. Overtime, that 'anywhere, anytime' lifestyle took a massive toll on me and I went through some of the darkest days of my life as a result."
Growing up in the Queensland town of Mackay, 23-year-old ZEKIEL is one of six children. Moving to Brisbane at 18, ZEKIEL flexed his newfound passion for writing and performing, while working hard independently promoting his music, before the hustle saw him move to Sydney in 2019.
Since this time, ZEKIEL's work has always emphasised his storytelling ability, as well as a knack for versatility and musical range; each track feeling different to the last, but somehow connected through his ability to illuminate the stories behind each one.
"Skipping School" – his 2019 break-out single which carved the musician a place as one-to-watch in the year ahead – dissected high school pettiness and teenage crushes through butter-smooth R&B choruses, while comparatively, the song following - "9 Days Straight", released earlier this year - was more verse-focused; a quick-firing vocal pace and emotive lyricism telling a story of exhaustion and mental health. "Energy", his follow up single released back in September.
It's clear that ZEKIEL is quickly finding his pace. As a songwriter, he's worked with musicians such as Thelma Plum, Cosmo's Midnight and Jack Gray, while his own work features on tastemaking music sites such as PileRats and Life Without Andy, both quick to jump onto his vision and prowess.
However, he's only just getting started. Throughout the remainder of the year ZEKIEL plans to expand his music library with singles to come, each one showing his versatility. The releases draw upon a difficult time for the rapper, one which saw him process addiction and personal turmoil through songwriting in a way that allowed him to eventually overcome his demons, and reassess his life.