Best New Artist: A.Chal

May 6th, 2014: As seen on Archive (PDF)

There have been mentions of his Peruvian heritage, affiliations to Ralph Lauren as an on-off music director and general underground DJ/producer status peas and carrots, but here’s the BitCandy skinny on this dude who goes by A.Chal on the intranets -> cut through the marketing cryptics and get to mind-raping this genius video he’s got directorial credits on that is part Drive, part Eyes Wide Shut, with rose petals from American Beauty shoved down its throat. Add in A.Chal’s woozy beat weavings and A$AP Rocky slow-shock cadence, billowing lines like “take a tissue and blow that/’Cause tonight we do it for Kodak” and dive deep into the beautifully noir side of the human condition.

The rabbit hole does get deeper, though, from equally plunky, druggy spins on Arcade Fire and Radiohead remixes that define an LA scene in which he’s surrounding himself in something hypnotically destructive. While he’s got a EP that just dropped, Ballroom Riots, showcasing a few more Bret Ellis-style nihilisms—see “Touch Me Like I’m Famous”—and his remixes dive into Korn a capellas and samples from Vicent Gallo films, studded with “money” Biggie quotes and token Chanel signage. Somehow, some wonderful how, it all fits in this harrowing lonely world he’s building.