West London rapper S1’s Split Personality is more than just a debut project. The 11 tracks on the tape are the end result of a long and bumpy road. In the couple of years building up to his recent success, he overcame homelessness and issues with the police—and music was the key. He sought refuge in the studio. In the short-term, it was a roof over his head and in the long-term, it was his ticket to a better life. 

Thematically, the set unites the two sides of the S1 coin. On the one hand, there’s the cruddy, tough-talking drill he made his name on and on the other, the lighter, melodic rap sounds of his more recent output. To reinforce that, he brought in Skengdo and Lil MDot on the drill side and Peter Xan and YvDaghost for the rap tracks. The production, which runs the full gamut of both sounds, comes from some of the most certified names in both rap and drill, including Chuck, Gibbo, Lock, Chris Rich Beats, Pluto, and the mastermind behind Backroad Gee’s Mukta Vs. Mukta, Finn Wigan.

Here, S1 breaks down every track on Split Personality, explaining more about the themes and how they play into each track. Take it in below and cop or stream the full album on iTunes or Spotify.


“How I Feel”

Boy... ‘How I Feel’ is a touchy one for me. One of my favourite tracks I’ve ever made, it’s personal for real. Like, I had to tell the streets, the people, the industry how I really feel. During the period of making it, I was going through some stuff with people around me. I felt betrayed and a bit angry, you know? So I had to let the people know. I didn’t write ‘How I Feel’, I freestyled the whole thing. It’s real pain, real issues, real life. You can’t write those things down. Well, I can’t anyway. I heard the beat and instantly knew what to talk about.”

“Sweeper”

“I originally made two versions of ‘Sweeper’: both with different hooks, and I was stuck between the two. I didn’t know which one to go with, but I’m happy with the decision I went with in the end. This track is definitely the track to get the vibe going; the hook is catchy, and the vibe overall is just chill. And I talk about some of the real shit I went through when I was on the roads. I know people where I come from have gone through and are going through a lot. I’m trying to be a role model to the young ones coming up. I’m trying to tell them the roads are mad, the roads are crazy. You get good and bad results from the roads, but more bad than good, and I’m just trying to show folks that no matter where you come from, you can make it and you can be anything you want to be.”

“No Way” f/ Skengdo

“This is a banger I made a little while back. I actually made it in Holland. Me and Skeng were out in Amsterdam and we were with Sosa Millz, a Netherlands producer who is just crazy with it! We were chilling, catching a vibe, and Sosa played this beat and I just remember spazzing out, then Skeng spat that hook and I knew we had something dope. It all just fitted well and we bounced right.”

“No Games”

“I’m not even gonna lie: I was faded when I made ‘No Games’ [laughs]. I just remember hearing the beat and humming the hook. I kept playing around then, out of nowhere, I started catching the vibe neat, freestyling crazy, then I just jumped in the booth and wrapped it up. The topic behind this track is like, I ain’t here for no fun, no bullshit, no games, you know? I’m here for the bag and to build an empire that can’t be destroyed. I’m trying to go to the very top, but by all means, I’ll do what I’ve got to do to stay protected. I talk about my youngen, my lil homie YS1, I’m talking to the roads and I’m talking to people’s souls.”

“She Say”

“There’s a lot of capping ass women out here and I love them all [laughs]. They’re our queens but, sometimes, they can be evil [laughs]. Especially when you’re in the line of work I’m in, some of these women only rock with you because you’ve got clout or you’re ‘someone’, you know what I mean? So it’s like, I’m doubting what shawty’s saying, you feel me? ‘She Say’ is a slapper, though! 100%. A real party banger.”

“Rockstar Diva” f/ Peter Xan

“Me and Xan went crazy on this one! Chucks pulled up the beat, then me and Xan just went back to back, straight off the dome—I didn’t write nothing down. Then Chucks played about with my voice and it became what it is now. I thought I’d try something different with this sound.”

“Demon”

“‘Demon’ was a last-minute addition, but the right one. Due to my fans heavily requesting ‘the old S’, the drill S1, to return, I thought it was only right to get in the booth and fully spazz out. Literally like a demon! I had some shit to say, so I let it go. The beat was perfect; big up Likkledotz on that. I spoke my things on this track, got some stuff off my chest, but the main target was to make sure my fans know and never forgot I’m the King of Drill and always will be! I ain’t left drill, I’m just entering other lanes that I know I can master. I’m gonna be back to the drill full-time soon, but for now, I’ve got the wave to master.”

“Impress” f/ Lil MDot

“I made this song a long time ago. Nearly two years now! Me and Lil MDot have been peoples for a minute now, and around two years ago we linked up at a studio in South London. I remembered I’d done a freestyle to the beat at home, but I felt like I had to show Lil M. I thought we’d bounce off each other well, we’d be a good mix, and I was more than right. He heard it, I spat a little something and that’s when we both decided to lock it in.”

“Real Pain”

“‘Real Pain’ is another personal track for me. I put a lot of pain and emotion into this song and, dor me, this is one of my best. I just feel like you can really hear my pain, you can feel the struggle I went through—you can hear it, and that was my aim. Everyone I’ve played the track to has literally said the same thing. It’s one of them tracks that make you deep life and really think shit through, but at the same time it lifts those going through the same shit as me.”

“Beat It Up” f/ YvDaghost

“When I heard the beat for ‘Beat It Up’, I knew what I wanted to do; I knew how to work my magic, but I knew I needed to pull someone in on the track and I had one person in mind, and that was YV. The guy’s a magician! I fucks with his work the long way, so it was only right. ‘Beat It Up’ is one for them cocky folks; them ‘vagina slayers’ [laughs]. Nah, I’m playing, but it’s one for the mandem and the ladies. It’s a vibe girls can dance to and the mandem can get lit to. It’s a big mood!”

“Pretty Little Thing”

“I made ‘PLT’ in Tweeko’s studio in New Cross—it was a mad night! [Laughs] I had the hook on my mind for time, but I just needed to find the right beat. I came across this beat on YouTube and I said, ‘Yeah, I gotta buy this beat! I need this beat!” I got in the booth, poured a drink and just got with it, spat the hook, came out, thought about the verse, went back in and freestyled the rest of the song and, shlee, we got a banger for the gyal dem!”

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