DE’WAYNE and Awsten Knight team up for cathartic new track “Perfume”—watch
After teasing a collab for months, alternative singer/rapper DE’WAYNE and Waterparks’ Awsten Knight have finally released their highly anticipated track “Perfume.” The duo also shared a refreshing music video for the song.
With the new track, DE’WAYNE hopes to show that love doesn’t just manifest in one emotion, and falling in love might not always feel like sunshine and rainbows.
“I never ever write love songs, but this is one, and it’s about my high school lady,” DE’WAYNE says. “You ever love someone so much [that] you hate them? This is my ode to her, and if she hears it, I honestly hope she sings along. Even though falling in love can be the total opposite of beautiful, if you start to fall for someone, go super hard!”
Last summer, DE’WAYNE teased an “insane banger” that featured Knight, saying fans might be surprised to learn that the Waterparks frontman can rap just as well as he can sing. With “Perfume” finally out, DE’WAYNE and Knight definitely didn't let us down.
The gritty and exhilarating music video shows DE’WAYNE and Knight rocking out while smashing TVs, throwing paintballs and falling off skateboards. With DE’WAYNE’s signature red streak and Knight’s rainbow hair for Waterparks’ new era, the two are having unadulterated fun that adds to the vibrant, playful vibe of the video. This behavior isn’t surprising to see, as they've been friends for a couple of years.
“I send Awsten everything I work on, and this was the song that he felt was gonna go crazy,” DE’WAYNE says. “So, I asked him to jump on it, and I got a verse back a week later.”
You also may recognize DE’WAYNE from Waterparks’ 2018 Entertainment tour with iDKHow, Nick Gray and Super Whatevr or the 2019 FANDOM tour. After seeing him perform live, Knight knew he had to get DE’WAYNE onstage with the band again for their FANDOM tour, and a last-minute change led to the singer supporting them alongside alt-rock band Kitten. DE’WAYNE often joined Knight, guitarist Geoff Wigington and drummer Otto Wood onstage for FANDOM track “War Crimes.” He was even credited on “War Crimes [Live]” on the band’s live album, FANDOM: LIVE IN THE UK.
With fans waiting in anticipation for the collab DE’WAYNE teased last summer, they finally shared the title and a snippet of the track on social media this week. DE’WAYNE excitedly proclaimed via an Instagram post that this is a track you'll want to get ready for.
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You’ve been friends for a couple of years now. What was the creative process like once you asked Awsten for the verse?
DE’WAYNE: It was the best creative process because it happened so naturally. I sent Awsten the longest voice message, like I was asking him to be my shorty, and a few days later, “Perfume” was complete. I cried a little driving down 101 in L.A. listening to it the first time.
What was the inspiration behind the video’s cathartic TV smashing and paintball-throwing vibe?
DE’WAYNE: The idea of talking about a heartbreak while mobbing with my best friend and smashing things to a sick-ass song just felt right!
What message do you hope listeners take away from “Perfume”?
DE’WAYNE: Regardless of if you fall in love or even it doesn’t go so well, you still gotta go hard.
How do you inspire and support each other besides collabing together?
AWSTEN KNIGHT: I love DE’WAYNE, and I love this song. I was so happy he asked me to be on it because the demo was constantly stuck in my head, even before I was involved with it. When I finally go back to my home planet, I’m gonna bring this song with me to show my real parents Earth isn’t that bad.
More on DE’WAYNE and Awsten Knight
DE’WAYNE has been making music since his first self-released single “Best Friend” in 2016. According to his SoundCloud, he wrote the song for his older sister to tell her no matter what happens or where they go, they will always be best friends.
His first EP, Don’t Be Afraid, was released via MDDN Records in 2017. The five-track offering has low-key songs such as “Do What We Want To” and more gritty tracks such as “Watchin” featuring André Paxton.
Later that same year, DE’WAYNE supported Chase Atlantic on their U.S. tour before collabing with them on “Adios” in 2018. The explosive track combines elements of rock and hip-hop in a way that's both memorable and unique. 2018 also saw DE’WAYNE featured on “Just A Little” for Jamaican-born R&B singer Masego’s album Lady Lady.
Over the summer, DE’WAYNE announced that he signed to Hopeless Records and released “National Anthem,” a song calling for change following worldwide Black Lives Matter protests in response to police brutality in America. He was also featured on “A Dying Plea Vol. 1,” another protest song released on Election Day in November with Rage Against The Machine’s Tom Morello and Anti-Flag. The track was DE’WAYNE’s way of using his platform to hold the country accountable and continue discussing the need for change.
More recently, in 2021 the singer released “I Know Something,” which is about meeting your partner’s family for the first time. A much more lighthearted song, DE’WAYNE said the accompanying video allowed him to have fun and let his guard down.
With the release of “Perfume” and the announcement of a new era, Waterparks have had a crazy 2021 so far as they prepare for what's to come. After Knight announced the end of the FANDOM era by cutting off his iconic green hair on a livestream back in September, the band released the first single off their forthcoming album, Greatest Hits, “Lowkey As Hell.”
Since then, fans of the trio speculated on what the new era would entail as well as what the new album would be titled. In February, the band confirmed the album name and also revealed their latest single, “Snow Globe.” The song shows a new side to Waterparks with a vibey, experimental sound. However, once you hear Knight’s familiar and comforting vocals, you know you’re indeed listening to a Waterparks track.
While we wait for the release of Waterparks’ new album, Greatest Hits, due out May 21, what are your reactions to DE’WAYNE and Knight's catchy new track? Sound off in the comments below.