Like many kids of his age, EightySeven grew up following the likes of Michael Jackson, Busta Rhymes, Snoop and Timbaland in his native Belgium. Pretty soon, he was working out how to build his own beats and sounds on synthesizers.
His sound gradually moved towards a broader, deeper feel than is usual in Europe. The influences are more overtly US, showing a soulful musicality alongside the big upfront kick.
“EithySeven is definitely more than just a beatmaker,” says Ben Schwag, who has mixed for him. “In some ways, he’s like a sound designer that builds an atmosphere – like a backstory that a rapper can work on.”
Over the years, EightySeven has worked with the new French rap nobility such as Hamza and Kekra and labels such as Universal Music France and (currently) Treze Recordz.
He notably played an instrumental role in the success of the YouTube phenomenon SEB in the French charts with “Taedium” – about the rapper’s love/hate relationship with the Internet. The track currently has nearly 2.7 million views on YouTube.