Brockhampton’s frontman Kevin Abstract recently graced the cover of GQ’s digital Pride issue. In an in-depth conversation with playwright Jeremy O Harris, the rapper opened up about his sexuality, the hip hop boyband’s upcoming album and his friendship with actor Shia LaBeouf.
On the subject of new music, Abstract revealed that Brockhampton’s currently working on their follow-up to last year’s Iridescence. The outfit’s forthcoming as-yet-untitled LP is described as a “summer album” featuring “feel-good” sad songs. “Not too sad and like, ‘Oh, our life sucks,’ just more like, ‘Just enjoy what’s in front of you,’” Abstract explained.
He added, “Something we’re doing is putting those type of lyrics—like this shit is trash, anxiety, depression, all that stuff—taking those type of lyrics and putting it on a song that a bunch of people could dance to or something. It’s just like [OutKast’s] ‘Hey Ya!’”
Abstract also spoke about hosting therapy sessions at his home with his idol-turned-friend LaBeouf. “I invite a bunch of artists from [Los Angeles], and we sit in my kitchen. It could be 40 people. One by one, we go in a circle and say what our week looked like. It’s taught me a lot,” the rapper said.
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Brockhampton mastermind @KevinAbstract makes art to survive. For #Pride month, GQ called up playwright @JeremyOHarris to sit down with the young leader of the rap collective for a raw, far-ranging conversation about creating while queer, forgiveness, the trickiness of mining personal trauma, and Friday night therapy sessions with Hollywood friends. Read it at the link in bio. (Styling by @mobolajidawodu, directed by @andrewbmyers) #brockhampton #kevinabstract
According to Abstract, LaBeouf guides the sessions, which mostly involves creatives living alone in LA, while he sits back and listens. “[LaBeouf] is ten years older than me, so the advice he has is fucking crazy,” the 22-year-old rapper said. “It’s really healthy to have someone like that in my life.”
Elsewhere in the interview, Abstract recalled the impact founding member Ameer Vann’s departure had on Brockhampton. Vann left the group last May over several sexual misconduct allegations. “It’s just like, fuck. In those moments, family was first, for sure. We spoke for hours internally,” Abstract said. “What if we wanted a little bit more time of having therapy as a friend group, and still came to the same result?”
Read Abstract’s full interview with GQ here.