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Nur-D performs for the Local Show

Nur-D performs in The Current studio.
Nur-D performs in The Current studio.Nate Ryan/MPR
  Play Now [24:46]

by Andrea Swensson and Kayla Song

June 11, 2019

Nur-D - Take My Picture
by MPR
Nur-D - Nin10doh
by MPR
Nur-D - Black Wizard Wave
by MPR

Twin Cities rapper Matt Allen, also known as Nur-D on stage, didn't start out as the hip-hop artist he is today. In fact, he went from being a shy guy playing keyboard in a rock band to being the five-time Shut Up and Rap Champion just a year and a half ago. "I've always loved [hip-hop]," Nur-D says, "but I never thought it'd be something that I would do — mostly because I'm weird."

Nur-D made it onto the 2018 Soundset Music Festival bill three months after starting his rap career in February of that year. Before his Friday release party at the 7th St Entry for his upcoming album Songs About Stuff, he and DJ Hayes were able to stop by The Current studio for a high energy, gospel-like performance and a conversation with Andrea Swensson about the whirlwind of success he's had since his debut.

About his surprise invitation to play at Soundset not long after his immersion into the realm of rap, Nur-D says, "People took a chance on an artist that was young and hungry... I was not huge, and they were like, 'Hey come play Soundset for us.'"

The draw to Nur-D's music may be from his dynamic stage presence and sense of rhythm that he says is grounded in a background in gospel music, and it may also be the way he dismantles toxic masculinity through music. "I said to myself, 'Man, I just feel like I don't have that song. I don't have that be yourself, go out, get it, yes queen stuff for me,'" Nur-D said about the inspiration for his empowering song "Take My Picture" off his Mixtape 2: Boogaloo.

Nur-D will be joined by a mix of local rap talent including Lt. Sunnie, Mac Turner, ToVok The Word, Kode Red, and FruitPunchLoverBoy at his release party for Songs About Stuff. Use the audio player above to listen to the complete in-studio with Nur-D.



Nur-D - vocals
DJ Hayes

Songs Performed

"Take My Picture"
"Black Wizard Wave"

Hosted and produced by Andrea Swensson
Engineered by Michael DeMark
Visuals by Nate Ryan
Web feature by Kayla Song