Sharifa Is Pushing Punk Boundaries

Sharifa Is Pushing Punk Boundaries

Feb 26, 2024

London-based artist and producer Sharifa may just be 19 years old, but the sound of his latest track leans heavily into early pop-punk, bringing up visions of Blink-182 and Paramore with all the angst and yearning in tow. His video for “SOMEONE,” which premieres today on PAPER, also highlights that distorted guitar meets pop melodic sound while showing off what he tells PAPER is his desire to merge “traditional rap, punk and hyperpop.“ He also reveals that despite being well-versed in the art of saccharine punk, this was his first venture into the genre. “To get technical, I actually never really listened to much punk stuff before making the track,” he says.

"I reached out to Harry, the director who I worked on my last video with for "SOMEONE," he tells us. "I think we work really well together and I always enjoy making visuals with him. The track is a merge of a lot of genres and feelings and I wanted to convey that in the video." Working with Harry, the pair were inspired by "the traditional punk setup in pop-punk music videos and the surreal feel in hyperpop videos" putting those references together for the final clip. "We ended up merging traditional rap, punk and hyperpop music video setups into one video to show the genres behind the track and where they came from.”

Sharifa also tells us with a laugh that the song itself is about “So much emotion.” Lyrically, the track focuses on themes of disingenuous relationships and the innate human desire to be wanted and accepted. “I always let my emotions take over me when I write music,” he says. “I just kind of let them do the talking."

“SOMEONE” is just one example of where Sharifa wants to expand musically, noting that his fans can expect “more of these crazy tunes” in the months to come. “I love making new things and pushing myself creatively especially when so much new music out there can sometimes sound quite similar,” he says. “I enjoy not fitting into a box. It makes my creative process feel so much more natural. I loved pushing my boundaries with VISCERAL who produced this track and “SOMEONE” is just the start of this chapter.”

Photography: Peter O’Sullivan