ASAP Rocky is a man of mystery these days. Every so often, paparazzi catch the 34-year-old rapper walking around New York City or on vacation with his girlfriend Rihanna, but aside from a few candid photos or random interviews here and there, no one really knows what he’s been up to. Luckily, that’s changing now.
On Dec. 2, ASAP dropped “Shittin’ Me.” The track, which he describes as having an “industrial” sound, serves as the lead single on the soundtrack for EA’s video game Need for Speed: Unbound. It also follows a string of early 2022 releases including, “D.M.B.” and “Doja” with $NOT.
Rocky’s recent musical output has led many fans to believe he is gearing up for a follow-up to his 2018 experimental album, Testing. In May, he said he was “wrapping up the album.” Now, seven months later, the multifaceted artist says he’s still in the process of finishing the project, but it will be here sooner than you think. “Without giving out too many surprises, it’s some cool shit in store,” he tells Complex. “And it’s not a situation where they are going to have to wait long. It’s like ASAP, no pun intended.”
Music isn’t the only thing on Rocky’s agenda. Earlier this month, he announced HOMMEMADE, his new design studio. To celebrate the launch, he revealed the inaugural collaboration Shroom CACTUS® with Gufram. Music and fashion aside, naturally one of the biggest things on everyone’s mind is his first child, a son he welcomed with Rihanna in May. Of fatherhood, ASAP says, “I love it. Everything is just based around my newfound love for being a dad and a family man. It’s lit right now. I can’t even describe it. Yo, you see this smile!”
In a brief phone conversation, ASAP Rocky spoke to Complex about his new single “Shittin’ Me,” the upcoming album, being a father, and more. The new interview, edited for clarity, is below.
When did you first make “Shittin’ Me” and what was the recording process like in comparison to your past singles?
I made “Shittin’ Me” a long time ago, years ago. Probably around like 2019. It was a little demo. My last album that I recorded was in 2018, so it was a loosie for a while. And in 2020, we got the opportunity to work with EA for Need for Speed. So we figured that would be a real cool loosie to give to them as a lead single. I think it complements the game really well.
The recording process was insane. “Shittin’ Me” was with producer Kelvin Krash, and we were in my New York City apartment at the time. We were just vibing out. We made this wacky, quirky song, and “Shittin’ Me” with unorthodox industrial drums and the beat just sounds very unfamiliar.
You don’t always get the credit for having innovative music videos. How do you build out concepts for videos like the “Shittin’ Me” video or any of your videos for that matter?
Man, thank you for that, because I feel the same way. Tell them, give me my fucking flowers! I like roses, I like tulips, lilies, all that shit. I think that it goes without saying that I’m a visual artist. So a visual component to a song is so vital. That’s my only way of expressing a song. I think that’s the last piece of execution when you’re making an actual song. From day one, I developed this reputation of being one of those visual artists, so this goes without saying that I had to kind of keep the tradition going with this one.
And the process was chaotic. As you could tell, my aesthetic for videos now are more everything at once, just more chaotic, organized chaos. You noticed the aesthetics. I want to display that more because I graduated from giving you the cerebral, surreal, ghetto-fabulous lifestyle or giving them a look into a lifestyle they’ve never seen… Now it’s more so about creating these worlds or scenarios in a more chaotic way because I think it is a nice way to display my ADHD.
“It’s such a really weird time for hip-hop.”
“Shittin’ Me” is the lead single for Need for Speed: Unbound, but could this also be a lead-up to your album? In May, you said you were “wrapping up.” What stage are you in now?
Yes. We’re [still] wrapping the album now. Like I told everybody last time, the Rolling Loud performance was my last performance until the album was wrapped. And now it’s about time that we start dropping songs and getting prepared for the rollout. There’s a lot in store, and I’m excited about everything. Without giving out too many surprises, it’s some cool shit in store. And it’s not a situation where they are going to have to wait long. It’s like ASAP, no pun intended.
In addition to new music, you also recently debuted your new design studio Hommemade. Furniture and design have always been a passion of yours. What other pieces can we expect from this venture?
Tons of innovative decor. It’s going to be like any other brand. So we’ll start dropping pieces with collections. And I can’t believe that this is finally out. It’s a dream come true for me. I still get excited about things like this. I’ve been trying to display my love and my innate passion for furniture and design for the past 10 years. So the fact that it’s out and this thing is real… People know the name, and I feel so accomplished in regards to that. It feels amazing, honestly. I’ve always been dropping hints. I’ve been hinting at it for a little minute now.
“It’s beautiful. Honestly, I think fatherhood gives me more time to do exactly what I want. I don’t have time for anything that isn’t priorities.”
With all of your music releases and upcoming creative projects, how have you been adjusting to new life changes like fatherhood?
It’s beautiful. Honestly, I think fatherhood gives me more time to do exactly what I want. I don’t have time for anything that isn’t priorities. It helps you prioritize, honestly. I love it. Everything is just based around my newfound love for being a dad and a family man. It’s lit right now. I can’t even describe it. Yo, you see this smile! I’m all smiles right now, man.
We’re all happy for you guys, and we can’t wait to hear more about your family when the time comes.
Nah, it’s coming soon.
Raf Simons brand is ending after nearly 30 years. What will its legacy be?
I think he already built his legacy at this point. It’s one of those legacy brands. Especially for me, I think Raf Simons was at the pinnacle of when streetwear culture, hip-hop culture, and high-end fashion all submerged and came together. I think brands like Rick Owens, Raf Simons are really the epitome of it. So, it goes without saying, he’s already a legend. I’ve been kind of archiving all my old Raf. It’s kind of crazy. His shit is going to be worth so much money in the next year or two.
What’s the most important thing we should know about ASAP Rocky at this point in his career as an artist, designer, and father?
The most important thing that they should know about me, if they don’t already know, is that I’m pure artistry right now. I’m in a place where I want to give my all to all of this. All I have is my craft, my art, my family. That’s just my life. That’s what encompasses or completes my life at this moment. So I’m really compassionate about everything that I do. And I’ll reiterate I want to express myself musically in a way that I haven’t. And it’s such a really weird time for hip-hop. We’re losing so many legends. And the scope of the game, pop is fighting for the number one spot, as far the most predominant genre. It’s a really weird time right now. I don’t really care for the politics of it. I just want to give motherfuckers some dope shit. They’re going to see. It’s going to be ill. I want to press the reset button on everything that we’re doing and hopefully lead by example for everybody else to be more creative, forward thinking.