He’s the corn-rowed, gold-grilled, Houston-born rapper first made famous by MTV’s ‘From G’s To Gents’ and he’s now signed a reported eight-album deal with Diplo’s Mad Decent. We caught up with RiFF RAFF backstage before his sold-out show at the Opera House on Friday night to chat about upcoming music, collaborator wish-lists and his top secret new project with Skrillex.

Sitting in the dressing room, the self-proclaimed Golden Child of Rap runs us through his outfit. He’s “Versaced down” – dressed head-to-toe in designer threads, with his trademark purple Icee Slurpee diamond chain hanging around his neck.

In the past twelve months, Riff has traded his Texas white boy oddity for that of a legitimate recording artist. His most important milestone? A record deal with Major Lazer’s head man Diplo.

MTV: Let’s talk about Diplo. How has your life changed since he signed you to Mad Decent?

RiFF RAFF: He's a friend of mine. He's my homie. We have a long history together, but now we're working on music. It's the beginning of new music. When we drop this [album] we're going to have Diplo tours and RiFF RAFF tours, but until then, we're just working on the album. We’ve never spent that much time in the studio so we're just letting the pieces fall into place.

MTV: Who have you worked with on the new record ‘Neon Icon’?

RiFF RAFF: A$AP Rocky, Drake, Asher Roth, Mac Miller, Action Bronson. I don’t want to leave any names out but I don't want to reveal everybody. Wiz Khalifa, Mike Posner, TrapZillas and DollaBillGates. I've said enough names but there's more too. It's really crazy how many people are actually featured on this album.

MTV: What about Skrillex?

RiFF RAFF: You want to talk about me and Skrillex and Skylar Gray’s new song?

MTV: Sure do.

RiFF RAFF: Yeah? Me and Skrillex have an album coming out. I mean we have a song coming out. Oh sh*t. That’s what I do when I speak too soon. I can’t tell you more than that. MTV exclusive!

MTV: What was he like in the studio?

RiFF RAFF: Skrillex? Real easy. He’s one of the most creative people I know, so when we go in there we just put together songs easy. It’s nothing.

MTV: What about the Odd Future boys – you working together again soon?

RiFF RAFF: Me and Earl [Sweatshirt] have a song – you heard it? And me and Domo [Genesis] have a song that hasn’t come out yet, so yeah, we’re going to work together soon.

MTV: What do you think about Justin Bieber?

RiFF RAFF: What can you say about Justin Bieber? I mean, he’s Justin Bieber. He’s one of the greatest artists of our time. Along with myself. You know what I mean?

As for the entirely bizarre – but totally awesome – experience that is Riff Raff, the rapper is the only one who knows if his outrageous (and kinda genius) persona is genuine or not.

“I don’t have rules and regulations like the average person,” he said. “A lot of people have a certain movement, they’re going for a certain thing, they have a certain perception and a certain way they’re trying to look. I don’t have that. I do whatever. That’s me.”

An hour later, we’re ushered out of the room so that Riff and his crew – TrapZillas and DollaBillGates – can sound check. But not before he directs us to make a cameo on his Vine (which means we’re pretty much BFFs). “You’re coming to the show, right?” we hear as we walk off.

Of course we were. And it was one of the best shows we’ve seen all year.

RiFF RAFF’s debut album ‘Neon Icon’ is set to drop this August.

— Leni Andronicos

Check out our interview with Riff Raff in the video clip below!


While he was Down Under last week we caught up ...

Copyright : MTV Australia