Sainté has today dropped brand new single ‘No Love’ (featuring Miraa May). It’s the hotly-tipped Leicester rapper’s first flavour of a new project to follow soon, in the wake of the 22-year-old winning early plaudits (and over 10 million streams) on ‘Champagne Shots’, and debut EP ‘Local MVP’.
Propulsive, intimate and atmospheric, ‘No Love’ perfectly pairs Sainté’s quickfire flow with a soulful appearance from Miraa May, over the self-fulfilling fear that “I never show no love / because I didn’t want my heart getting stolen.”
Sainté raps cautionary fables over hazy, smoked-out production with a wisdom that goes beyond his years. Conversational and genre-fluid, the emcee appears to channel childhood kingpins like 50-Cent or Jay Z as much he speaks to the anxieties at the heart of his generation. An equal student of contemplative, 90s R&B – whether that’s D’Angelo or Sade – Sainté loves how if you released a project back then, ““it was all about being yourself and no one else. Originality was a MUST!” It’s an energy he wants to inject into UK rap today, and his own, eclectic releases to follow ‘No Love. “That competitive spirit comes from the golden era of rap and the fact I play basketball (Sainté used to play at a semi-pro level).”
Despite humble beginnings, Sainté’s rise coincides with a huge cultural moment for the city of Leicester (and his beloved, FA-cup-winning team). The young rapper has also already made his own waves outside of music, appearing in campaigns from the likes of Louis Vuitton or Billionaire Boys Club. With records as boisterous and charismatic as they are candidly introspective, Sainté has learned fast both as an artist, and a young man, on who he is and what he wants. “I am taking my time to tell a three-dimensional story and show you all angles,” he concludes. “I guess the music before was more paranoid, because I grew up close to that kind of lifestyle. Now, I want to take people into a place where they can learn how to enjoy life as [the pandemic has shown] it’s so short.” He smirks, before adding – tongue firmly in cheek – “I’m trying to be a sweet boy. I’m not interested in people thinking I am tough, because I am only trying to be Saintly.” In time, you suspect he won’t be the only one just trying to be Sainté.