Starting with his name, no one’s ever seen anything quite like H1mward.
Seemingly having spawned out of thin air at the top of 2023 with his viral “Take Da Charge” remix, North Carolina native H1mward is a fresh breath of charisma and creativity. With the face of Tupac and the lovably chaotic energy of ODB, he feels like an old school rap star that’s been teleported into the TikTok era to remind us that lyricism doesn’t have to be boring.
Since his initial pop, throughout the year H1mmy’s category-defying sound, nonstop quotables and unapologetically edgy approach have piqued the interest of important tastemakers throughout the underground and the industry – most recently with his Cash Cobain produced On the Radar freestyle. Finally ready to make his formal introduction, this week he set the tone for what can be expected from his Calm Down H1mmy debut with its first single “MDS.”
At just one minute and nineteen seconds “MDS” is the perfect crash course to enter the weird and wonderful world of H1mward. Immediately gripping from his first “first of all”, he wastes no time in introducing himself as literally Him: letting off reckless bars, referring to himself in the 3rd person and unabashedly declaring his love for his favorite things in life (unmistakably “Money, Drugs & Sex” in that order).
While these aren’t exactly new ideas, nothing about “MDS” feels familiar. The energy on the chorus is so palpable it sounds like H1mmy is jumping through your speaker to chant “I Like Money Drugs and Sex” directly in your ear. It’s unlikely you’ve ever heard someone so passionate about their vices, let alone backed by such chaotic, borderline schizophrenic production (produced by frequent collaborator, Hotelroom). And you definitely have never heard such a spooky synth in your life.
As for the Digggers-directed visual, it lays out exactly what one might expect a day in the life of a guy called H1mward to look like: rolling out of bed at 1pm, starting the day around 9pm, and partaking in as much MDS as possible through the early hours of the morning (only to rinse and repeat the following day). And once again, the time cards and quick flashes of H1mmy’s favorite pastimes against a black background give the video a definitively old school feel – furthering the theory that he’s actually a time-traveling golden era transplant if it weren’t for the very current references and fashion choices.
While his name might induce some eye rolls at first, one listen to any of the songs in his very limited catalog is enough to realize that H1mward is no gimmick.
Following his initial breakthrough with “TDC”, he dispelled any one-hit-wonder ideas with equally engaging original tracks and a series of impressive DIY shot-on-iPhone music videos. From the incredibly hard-hitting “FL1P” (Jinkies!) and “Not No Mo”, to the more calm and collected “Man3” and “Not1ce,” every release has shown there’s a lot more than a one-off Project Pat remix to North Carolina’s newest rising star.
Now following his recent On the Radar appearance, with “MDS” and his impending debut mixtape Calm Down H1mmy, H1mward is clearly onto bigger things.
Listen to H1mward’s “MDS” below