PILTON, England (AP) — British rapper Dizzee Rascal is going all the way in on rap on his new CD.
The singer's best-selling tracks to date have been dance-based collaborations, including "Dance wiv Me" (featuring Calvin Harris), "Bonkers" (featuring Armand Van Helden) and "Holiday" (featuring Chrome), all taken from his 2008 album, "Tongue n' Cheek," but Rascal says his new album, "Raskit," is 100 percent rap.
Talking backstage at Glastonbury Festival, the London-born rapper explained that, after starting out at the forefront of the U.K. grime scene and then making an impact in pop, he has now come full-cycle and hopes to touch people on all sides of his fan base.
Dizzee Rascal says he was inspired by Jay Z's music.
"I was basically just trying to make something that could stand up to all the rap albums I grew up listening to," he says.
"Raskit," the rapper's first album in four years since "The Fifth" in 2013, has taken over two years to produce.
"I spent so long on this one, so much has happened in between," said the rapper. "I almost feel like new again because every time I have come out over 15 years, the game has changed a little bit."
Much of "Raskit" was recorded in the U.S., but the rapper made sure he embraced his British culture, including British slang in his lyrics to appeal to his U.K. fans.
"Even though some of these beats might sound American-friendly, the whole package is still clearly not geared for them. It's still geared for home first, so that made me happy."
"Raskit" is scheduled for release in the U.K. on July 21. Dizzee Rascal will be touring in October.