DeJ Loaf has been working on her debut studio album for the better part of two years and, in a new interview for The FADER's Faith Issue, the Detroit rapper shared the title of the upcoming project and detailed a host of collaborators who helped shape the sound of her debut.
The album is entitled Liberated and features contributions from her Columbia Records labelmate Leon Bridges (on the title track), producer Detail, and songwriter Ricky “Wallpaper” Reed. “I’m not like, 'Oh I wanna be a pop artist,'” she told The FADER. “I’m hoping people understand that this isn’t fake, or don’t think I’m just doing this because I’m being forced. I’ve always wanted to make bigger music. But I never could go all the way 'cause I didn’t have the resources, in terms of working with Grammy Award-winning producers, bigger studios, a bigger sound. I’ve always had it in me, but my voice is developed now."
The album does not have an official release date, but DeJ's manager told The FADER that the record is 90 percent complete. “I think I was forcing it, trying to make it sound a certain way as opposed to just letting it be natural,” she says of the recording process. “I’m thinking, like, Lauryn. I didn’t want to sing. I just wanted to rap, like hardcore. Just give ’em bars. I wanted people to take it seriously. I was just so focused on that at first. And then I’m like, You know what? Just do you.”