Bitsu: Portrait of an Avant-Garde rapper

Bitsu : Portrait d'un rappeur Avant-Gardiste

Bitsu, whose real name is Imrane, is a French rapper born in 1999 in the south of France. From the age of 13, he began writing with his brothers and cousins, influenced by British folk, French song, African music, and especially underground and mainstream American rap from the 2010s. The painter Jean-Michel Basquiat also played a crucial role in the development of this young artist.

His musical career has been marked by collaborations with recognized composers such as Croisade, Arthrn, NxxxxxS, DJ YUNG VAMP, SadBalmain, Swirl, and Mike Hook. Member of the Way Boto collective, Imrane launched his first project, Lemon Collection, in 2016. It was with the album NOMORELEMON in 2017, and in particular the single “HALLA”, that he created a real buzz in the Soundcloud scene French-speaking. That same year, he had the opportunity to perform as the opening act for A$AP Ant and Night Lovell, before moving to Libreville, Gabon.

Returning to France at the end of 2017, Bitsu followed up with a series of singles in Paris, then released the album LEMONDE in 2018, whose artistic direction was widely praised. Although some labels expressed interest, Bitsu preferred to remain independent and create the Amoranarchy collective.

In 2018, he announced the album SOUTHCIETY, but ultimately favored other projects between 2019 and 2023, such as 1 NUIT, We Up Next and TWILIGHT COLLECTION.

Bitsu does not follow any predefined creative pattern, giving free rein to his inspiration. This approach, although confusing, is the quintessence of his art. It is true that this unpredictability can be intimidating to the uninitiated, but it contributes to the unique aura of his work.

Bitsu, an artist of the new generation of rappers, stands out for his refusal of the classic codes of hip-hop. His family history, marked by the influence of his four older brothers, has shaped his eclectic musical approach, mixing rock, jazz and American rap. This diversity is reflected in his music, where he strives to open new musical doors and stylize the language.

Composer, painter, designer, Bitsu is a multifaceted artist. From the age of 17, he defined his art as a "trance experience", composed of emotional productions and clues to meaning. His music aims to transcend language, connecting to the listener's very soul.

His albums “No More Lemon” and “Limon des Oeufs ou le Monde”, released in 2017 and 2018 respectively, are masterpieces of the French-speaking rap scene. They perfectly illustrate his ability to interweave inspirations, instruments, sounds and feelings. Its chaotic visuals, matched to its music, offer ordered disorder, reflecting the artist's tormented mind.

Bitsu addresses themes such as introspection, money, drugs and love, reflecting the concerns of his generation. His treatment of addiction is particularly poignant, torn between drug use and the desire not to promote it. His relationships with women are also complex, oscillating between animosity and absurdity.

Despite a tendency to focus more on form than substance, Bitsu manages to convey deep and personal emotions. His pieces, often recorded live, exude a rare authenticity on the French scene. He does not hesitate to use atypical instruments for the French rap scene, such as guitars with Hispanic sounds.

Bitsu, at only 20 years old, already has a broader artistic vision than many of his contemporaries. His collaborations, particularly with underground artists, demonstrate his desire to fuse melancholy and innovative sounds, promising a brilliant future for French rap.

In conclusion, Bitsu's work is a never-ending journey, an elusive shadow that continues to fascinate and inspire. His art, at once dark, soaring, raw and authentic, is a continuous exploration of the limits of music and personal expression.

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