Pop Polymath: Why We Love MNEK

There is no doubt that MNEK is nothing short of a music industry polymath. With credentials in production for Kylie and Little Mix, songwriting for Beyoncé and Madonna plus applying his vocal talents to numerous acts alongside his own work, the guy is a total triple threat.

We also believe that, as shocking as it may seem, he’s painfully underrated. Here, we’ve narrowed down the talents of the 22 year old to five key points that mark MNEK as an act that deserves endless celebration for shaping the sound of pop over the last few years.

1: We have him to thank for Zara Larsson

Prior to 2015, Zara Larsson was pretty unbeknownst to the world outside of her home country Sweden, having infamously made a name for herself after claiming the Swedish Got Talent top-spot at age 10 (whilst most others at her age were probably still content playing with Lego). Though some of her best material comes from her singularly-Sweden days (see: Rooftop and Bad Boys), MNEK asking her to jump on the epic Never Forget You triggered the starting point of Larsson’s global domination. The rest is history…

2. Pretty much everybody is after him

Given MNEK’s first production credit crops up on The Saturday’s 2011 hit All Fired Up (what a song), six years down the line finds him making a guest appearance on grime hero Stormzy’s brilliant debut Gang Signs & Prayer with the likes of Madonna, Little Mix and Craig David in there for bonus effect. “In demand’ seems quite the understatement.

3. His own material is far from minor-league

With credentials as impressive as his, you can be forgiven for bypassing MNEK’s solo material as work that equals the quality of his behind-the-scenes achievements. We’ve already mentioned Never Forget You, though it’s Wrote A Song About You and EDM stomp At Night (I Think About You) where he shines through as a writing, producing, singing triple threat.

4. Hold Up…

This man is partly responsible for Beyoncé baseball-bat wielding mega-anthem Hold Up which seems more than valid enough for it’s own point.

5. The guy can really ace a cover version

MNEK is no stranger to having a sing-song of someone else’s track, even having released a cover of Queen’s Don’t Stop Me Now as a single back last year. A quick YouTube search will bring up a lengthy list of stellar cover versions, though we should warn that preferring his take to your favourite original is more than likely…

6. The guy is out, proud and ready to party

One of the strongest voices for the LGBT community in music, MNEK has tirelessly been loud and proud about his sexuality, embracing it in his art form and being a strong queer voice in an industry not fully representative of who we are. In fact, he’s joining us with a live DJ set at the HISKIND Launch Party at Shoreditch House to support, celebrate and champion his and our community. It’s the cherry on the cake and we can’t wait to catch him on the dance floor.

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