Shabir Karim, best known as Karim, is an Afghan-American artist from the “Middle East Side” of Queens, NY. He first rapped his way into the scene in 2013, with a cleverly titled mixtape, “Metropolitics,” produced solely by his brother Yaser.
He’s back with a vengeance this summer, dropping the cinematic visuals for his single “Melo,” telling the story of a young man on his grind.
“Melo” is produced by South Korean producer Gaka, aka GakaOnTrap, and is a single from Karim’s currently untitled upcoming mixtape. The Matthew Alvero directed visuals put an emphasis on the hustle: Karim starts off pushing a bike, and transitions to flossing in a Jeep; rich symbolism that evidences Karim’s “by any means necessary” philosophy.
The currently unnamed mixtape promises to be a banger, with appearances from Sir Michael Rocks and others. Production is handled by Queens producers and members of the Gritty Committee entourage, Yaser Laurent, and Offy, South Korea’s GakaOnTrap, Philly producer K.RICH of DUMPERZ, and a few other affiliates. The project ranges from richly detailed East Coast trap joints to ambient synths and jazzy blues influenced tracks.
Like we see with “Melo,” Karim draws parallels to NBA players, labeling himself as a “First Round Pick” in the rap game. He’s hoping to leave his mark this coming year and become one of XXL’s Freshman in 2017.