Cakes Da Killa realised he could rap while at high school in New Jersey. But as a fan of “more alternative music”, it wasn’t a skill he was keen to use.
He soon moved on from his Alanis Morrissette phase, though, discovering Busta Rhymes, Missy Elliott and Lil Kim, alongside the Brooklyn warehouse rave scene in his teens. This intersection of club culture and tongue-twisting, sexually liberated rap is where Cakes Da Killa exists in his purest form.
“Club culture as a form of escapism has always interested me since I was little,” he says down the phone while between stops on a co-headline US tour with Mykki Blanco. “I like to make music that combines that dance vibe with the hip hop, house, and disco I used to hear when I was shaking up parties.”
Being technically proficient is a point of pride for Cakes. “My style developed from going to balls and seeing people there rap,” he explains. “For me a lot of rappers aren’t rapping any more, which is problematic. What I hear is lacking content and technique. My songs might be about blow jobs, but nobody can say I can’t rap.”