LOTOS – Renaissance, track-by-track

Following the release of Renaissance back in September, Scottish hip-hop collective LOTOS (Last of the Old School) talk us through the record track-by-track

Feature by LOTOS | 09 Dec 2021

What Are We Waiting For
This whole track is about life, love, positivity – it just totally bangs! It’s about doing it together. Rooted in Scottishness, on the first verse Revelations talks about his experiences in Oban, how we can learn to focus and pull through when you sometimes feel like you've had enough. You always have more; we always have more. Working with the guys is just amazing, from Oggie with his stunning wee soulful grooves to King Kope, South London Brixton, all wrapped up in the realness. It’s a vibe.

Halal the Beef
Halal the Beef is a Scottish anthem. Straight out of Leith, it’s all about the artistry putting you in a state where you can really get lost in the lyrics. Actually, originally done on the OG Chinese Whispers album that went on to inspire collaborations on our second album with our family Mungo’s Hi Fi. It’s cinematic.  

Once again, we just love giving something different every single time... But that’s still true to what people love about us. It’s the connection, you know? Kope, like Revelations, is just a king. His flow is like heat, beat, chest bump – they both freestyle most of this release. ’We gonna write our names and hit the trains’ is all about his time as a don on the international Graffiti scene with extended family ADL.

OK, this is like watching Avengers mixed with a bit of Star Wars for the first time; it’s a movie! Loved doing this slow flow magic. Teamed with Kope’s stunning freestyles about the realty of living on the streets of the big smoke. It’s so deep.

The Ends
When this song was made it was like yessss, an absolute banger. That’s what we are about. Definitely something you will like... and getting great reviews from BBC Introducing to BBC 1Xtra. I think what we love, and the challenge for us as Scottish artists, is just really owning our slightly 'off-beat twang' as they call it down south. This song is for everyone, great for an instant hit of motivation, definitely for the DJs.

Generation X talk... It’s for the millennial, but that was accidental. We made it for the world, though sometimes music and the fans choose for themselves. It’s serious. The beat is ridiculous. Say no more, ken? 

The Truth
I think this is theee most underrated track of all time. It’s so visceral, raw. Lyrics that touch you: ‘No open door / No keys to even up the doors / Staying out there / Cardboard's and like the coldest floors’ [...] 'There's people there that are trying to steal everything / Your trainers, your dog, and even the food you eat’. [The Truth is] about the situation of homelessness in the UK. It will connect with so many people’s experience. We love this. Bless up Kope.

Boycott this system. Does exactly as it says on the tin. PSA: To be taken before any public demonstration, first attempt at grinding, even if it's a half-pipe, or any other epic situation that requires you to tap into your eco-friendly, brand new, sustainable lovely crew, LOTOS.

Demons is powerful. Think metaphysics, alchemy, this is a track that you can study. For those puritan hip-hoppers, the production is ridiculous. Revelations, Scottish pioneers, jeeze. ‘Pharoahs and Tsars, Scottish drink jars’. No question. No competitions. Ye just dinnae hear that type of sound nowadays. Some PhD type ae material.

Renaissance was released on 3 Sep; follow LOTOS on Instagram @lotos_music