It's a post-genre time where most of the good stuff can't fit into any perscribed box. But there's fusion and then there's J Hus.

At 21-years-old, J Hus is the UK music scene’s most valuable player. And he knows it. The East London polygon, through a blend of influences that range from afrobeats to dancehall to grime to American hip-hop, has pioneered his very own sound. And although it’s often been referred to as afro-swing, the Stratford-based artist isn’t looking to define it. He wants the music to keep shape-shifting through the London streets towards the sweaty dancefloor before anyone can catch up to his wave - the sonic tsunami that artists like Stormzy, Dave and Nines couldn't help but enlist on their history-making singles earlier this year.

But while melodic hooks and charismatic tracks have elevated Hus to a position of high-demand, it's his debut album Common Sense that's solidified him as one of the most prolific young artists reconstructing the UK's current creative identity.

He wants to represent it on a global scale. And finally, he's ready to.

Life seems pretty beautiful for 'Mr. Ugly.' You've been busy.

From August to November, I was just working on the album. I was just in the studio. It’s like my second home. You know what, it’s like my first home, because when I was doing studio, I was in there constantly. But now, I’m seeing the reaction so it feels like everything is starting to pay off now. It’s so exciting. From January and February, when I released ‘Friendly,’ them times there, we used to only get 40,000 views in a day. Now, we’re doing 240,000 a day. It’s just mad now. It’s crazy. It feels like all eyes are on us. So, I’ve just got to make sure that I deliver.

What was your mission and motive heading into working on your debut album?

I just wanted people to see an older J Hus. A more mature, grown up J Hus. There’s more music on there with messages. I wanted to make real music that was going to last and show them how diverse I am but at the same time, keep it so UK. Kind of a UK rap, grime, afrobeat kind of thing. Just forefront it and push it out. I just want to be at the front of it, because I feel like I started it.

Do you feel like a pioneer?

What Stormzy’s doing with grime, I want to do it with the little genre that I started. You know how I'm good with the hooks and all these things? I don't want to sound cocky but I can do really good hooks. But I think people forget that I can also do the proper rap thing. No other rapper can do it like that.

What are your thoughts on the obsession with trying to define that genre? Whether it's afro-bashment or afro-swing, there seems to be a need to find it's title.

I don’t like to define it. Because for me, I’ll never want to stick to just one type of music. I’m always dibble and dabbing into other sounds anyway. So it's all about advancing it and adding new sounds to it to make even more new music and a new sound. That's how you stay relevant too.

What have you been learning when it comes to putting out your debut? This is all new, especially when it comes to the industry rollout side of things.

I'm such an impatient guy. You have to imagine, I completed my part of the album in November. So, I've been waiting since November and that and it's just been so long. I hated it. I wanted it to be out and I wanted to preview new stuff but I couldn't. And the thing is, people were still judging me on my old music. So they didn't have the chance to hear the new stuff and I couldn't wait for them to hear it. I was tired of waiting. With my old stuff, everything was all dancey but it was all different. So I've still got that. But on the album, there's certain tunes that you can go mad to or go crazy. If you wanted to punch someone in the face while listening to it. There's certain songs you want to dance to with the girls. There's certain songs that make you just think about life. There's keep-your-head-up music to tell people to keep going. Like motivational music. It's got everything on there.

In order to blend and fuse influences the way that you do, it seems as though you need to have an extensive knowledge of music. Where did that inspiration and know-how come from with the new stuff?

Just my area. I come from a place in East London called Stratford. It's one of the most diverse places in London. It's got every single culture there. So I grew up with people from all over the world. At home, my parents would play old school reggae and old school afrobeats. When I used to go to parties with my parents and that, they used to play the afro stuff and I have a lot of Jamaican friends that would take me to bashments. And then, obviously, I was very influenced by grime and American hip-hop as well. So, just growing up, I heard everything and I reckon that's what made me. But at the same time, I'm blending it all in one, so it's nothing you've heard.

Do you feel like you've taken major risks on this project or anything that stretched you out of your comfort zone?

To be honest, my boundaries are so wide that I don't know if I can take risks. Because when you think of J Hus, you don't know what to expect from me anyways. But I have chunes on here that are nothing like I've done before. My favourite track is 'Plottin.' "Don't think I'm shy cause I'm quiet. I'm just plottin, I'm plottin." But it's on a garage beat. It's how I feel. It's a statement. When I perform, I'm so energetic. But in my normal life, I'm calm and I just mind my own business. And people ask, "Why are you so shy?" But the thing with me is, I feel like I'm just always overthinking about the next move I'm going to make. I reckon that statement there is what defines me the best and that's why it's my favourite chune. It's got an old-school garage flavour but it represents the new UK youth. I'm blending old with new.

So in terms of a symbol, what does this album represent for you in terms of your story and journey to get here?

This album is the first. It's the one. It's make or break. Everything is dependant on this album. Obviously, I've had a lot of good singles. I've done well. But this is a compilation. I reckon every song on the album could be a single. That's why the process was so long. We had so much trouble figuring out what should be the single. But I want it to be the new representation of the UK. This is us. This is our sound. Recently, Drake's taken a lot of interest in it and worked with our artists but when he's done tunes with Giggs, obviously here in the UK, we love it, but in America, they didn't really take to it. There was backlash. This is a statement to them. We're hard. I want it to represent the UK in the best way and make it top notch.

With all that being said, what is success to you?

That's a hard one, you know. After this album, success for me would be for it to do well. I want it to reach the Top 5. I want people to love it. I just want it to be everywhere. I want everyone to hear it. Success for me would be to blow up off of it. Really getting it out there and being able to represent the UK all over the world.

You're on your first major UK tour now as well. How does that feel throughout all this, especially with the being reportedly banned from performing in London thing?

I'm touring the UK but I can't tour London right now. I am working on something big for later this year for my London fans. But what we're going to do is, we're going on this tour and everything is going to go well and we're going to show them that, "Look, we can handle the tour. We're responsible people." And hopefully, they're going to let us perform. But it's exciting. Whenever I do a show, I go in there and it's just long. I always tell myself, "I'm not going to take off my top. I'm not going to jump in the crowd." But if I say that, I'm lying, because every show I go to, I've taken off my top and jumped in the crowd. Once I see the fans reaction, it just reminds me why I do music in the first place. It takes me to that zone.

J Hus' debut album Common Sense is out now.