I can feel a faint air of resignation breath its way through my laptop speakers. "There's a lot of think pieces you could write about Michete, I guess..." As if being a white, trans-feminine rapper wasn't already zeitgeisty, journalism fodder, Michete is also a native of Spokane, Washington, who's most famous, or rather, infamous resident, is Rachel Dolezal.

And he's right. There has already been considerable exposure of fiery rapper who, after only two EPs, has earned the dubious honour of a long-form think-piece on Pitchfork ("it basically implied that I didn't care about Black Lives Matter...like I'm just this reckless, crazy fucking racist," he laments). Then there was the hostile reaction to his use of 'faggot' in the lyrics, which also resulted in being banned from a local venue. "I'm like, 'Fuck you guys. You guys are old.'" He chuckles to himself, as if to demonstrate just how little he gives a fuck. A more auspicious endorsement followed with a spot on SPIN's top 50 hip-hop records of 2015, ahead of Drake/Future and Dr Dre no less.

Michete is, if anything, divisive. On record, he comes across as the type of person who uses wit for good and bad purposes in equal measure, with an added zero-tolerance policy to BS. On his latest EP, Cool Tricks 2, humour abounds in typically crass, provocative style ('Thick Boys'), as do withering put downs ('Come Get It, Daddy') and a devil-may-care attitude to the opinions of others ('I Want Your Blood'). While his flow isn't very technical, and the boisterous production (which, to be fair, he does himself) isn't as slick as his peers, the no-filter personality that overflows on Cool Tricks 2 is hard to ignore and marks Michete out as a star in the making.

While Michete's provocative nature may be eye-catching, it's not necessarily the most interesting. The outer layer burns so brightly that it make you wonder what's going on beneath it all. Is Michete a character? Is the 'real' Michete as polarizing as he is artistically? Who the fuck is Michete? We tried to find out and discovered healthy levels of vulnerability, intelligence and consciousness. Although, you might want to look away if your name is Perez Hilton.

The 405: Hey! How are you today?

Michete: I'm good. I just woke up. I'm not a morning person at all. Sorry. But I think I'm awake though. I had to get away from my house because my parents are at home and I didn't want to be talking super loud about myself. I didn't want to have to explain why. I just drove down the street and now I'm parked outside of a church.

Do your parents know what you rap? Or do you prefer not to talk about it with them?

Errr yeah, I prefer not to talk about it with them. They know that I rap but they don't... I don't really share details of it with them. I think they've seen it, kind of. They've Googled it behind my back and [they] didn't like what they saw. It's just something I prefer not to involve them in. At all.

I can imagine it's not the most parent friendly music, to be fair.

Yeah, it isn't.

Well let's start with where you grew up, Spokane. What was it like there?

It's a nightmare (laughs). I really don't like it. It's super white. A lot of people here are pretty conservative. The other day I said this thing about how I would describe the general aesthetic of Spokane residents as surrealist white trash. People are really gross and racist, like typically white trash. Or waspy - the rich people are. On top of that everybody is fucking insane. I don't know why that is. I know we're like one of the meth capitals of the country. Like, there is a lot of meth in Spokane. So, yeah, I wouldn't recommend living here.

What was it like growing up as someone who identifies as trans-feminine in that part of the world?

Well I think growing up for the majority of my adolescence, I just identified as gay. I didn't really start interrogating my gender identity or expression until later. Ummm... it was not the most fun thing, y'know? I came out when I was 17-years-old and... [nervously fumbles his words for a few moments]... it got a really negative reaction from my parents. This feels bizarrely personal, sorry, I'm not used to people asking about this. So yeah, I don't know. A bunch of people in middle school and high school hated me for being gay or whatever. But a bunch of other people really liked me. It's hard for me to talk about myself as if I was some type of victim of bullying, or ostracised. I was but a lot of people also liked me; I won prom king but a lot of people hated me because I was gay.

That's interesting, that you won prom king...

Yeah, I was popular. I'm just polarizing. The same way I am today. People either really like me or they just fucking don't. And people who didn't like me when I was young, that was usually why. They just thought I was a faggot and fucking hated me.

What was it about rapping that it felt like the right avenue to follow?

I always wanted to rap. I've been writing raps since I was a teenager. I just never thought it would be something I could take seriously because I was like this white gay person from Spokane. Like, that's not going to happen. But then hip-hop got super weird and, I don't know, I just got to a point where I wasn't doing anything else with my life and I needed to start doing something creative so I could not want to kill myself so I started taking rapping more seriously. And, apparently, it was a good idea because, I mean, I'm doing well. Obviously.

I was really interested in the press around you. There isn't a huge amount of it but what has been written has had a big impact. Shamir spoke about you on NME.com, which then lead to a lengthy profile-cum-think piece on Pitchfork. That's kinda crazy considering you had only just released your first EP, right?

Yeah and I hadn't even played a live show yet. So that was hilarious that I was in Pitchfork and I had literally never performed as Michete at that point. That was pretty surreal. I guess it pays to be friends with Shamir (laughs).

That feature went very deep into the politics of you as trans-feminine, white rapper. Were you aware how people were going to receive you?

Yeah. I think examining me from that standpoint, I'm a very mixed bag of controversy from all directions. There's a lot of think pieces you could write about Michete, I guess. I didn't like the way that article approached me. I didn't think they dug deep enough and got the information they should have about the kind of person I am.

I don't know if you read through the whole article thoroughly, but the part where they compared me to another rapper named B. Dolan, who wrote an essay for Pitchfork named What The White Rapper Owes Black Lives Matter. And I had actually read that essay before, and I agree with absolutely everything he said. I think it's an insightful and pretty necessary read for anyone white person that is going to rap.

But that Pitchfork article tried to position me as if I was on the opposite end of the spectrum. It basically implied that I didn't care about Black Lives Matter or that I have zero awareness of what my position as a white person in hip-hop means, like I don't give a fuck about anything, and I'm just this reckless, crazy fucking racist. Basically, that was what the article was saying. And so I thought that was pretty fucked up to draw all these crazy conclusions about me based on very little information. I didn't think that was cool but I got a lot of attention through that Pitchfork article so... I guess you've got to take what you can get when you're a nobody.

There is a lot of debate about the term 'queer-rap', and you've found yourself lumped into that group. What are your thoughts about that term?

I hate the term 'queer rap'. Honestly, I've come to discover I really don't fucking like it. I mean, I'm fine with the phrase 'queer rappers' and I'm fine with the fact that all these "LGBTQIALMNOP" artists in hip-hop are getting attention at the same time. The fact that they are going to talk about us together, that's inevitable. But when you use the phrase 'queer rap' as a genre or a category to put artists in, it's marginalising. It's basically trying to sweep us aside as a separate category. It's a way of subtly invalidating us, that we're not apart of real hip-hop and we're not 'real rappers'. We're 'queer-rap'.

I didn't release how much I hated it until some person messaged me about my music and was like 'oh yeah I don't usually like RuPaul type stuff but I think yours is good'. I was like, 'what about my music is similar to RuPaul? The reason you like my music and not RuPaul is because I fucking sound nothing like RuPaul.' Literally, that really pissed me off. That's when I started to realise, because I am a queer person, people are going to see my version of hip-hop as illegitimate. For that reason alone, they are going to be predisposed to thinking I'm just this novelty act, which I'm not. I'm not a novelty act. I'm very serious about my music and I'm very talented and I'm probably better than many of the straight guys rapping that you listen to, so fuck you. Don't put me in the 'queer-rap' category. Take me seriously as a real rapper who happens to be a queer person.

There seemed to be a little controversy about the use of the word faggot on Cool Tricks 1, and a reviewer for SPIN noted there was less of that word this time around. Was that a deliberate thing? Have your feeling on the word changed?

It wasn't deliberate. When I was first starting out and taking it seriously, I was like obviously very influenced by the rappers I was listening to. Most of the rappers I listen to use the N word all the time. Obviously I cant do that so I think I just started substituting it with 'faggot', just as a generic term to throw around for whoever, so I ended up using faggot a lot on the first EP. I didn't ever think it was going to be a controversial decision but apparently some people have real problems with it which I think is stupid. But yeah I think I just got more creative the second time around and had to rely less on that.

Where do you stand then on someone like Azealia Banks using the word? She been criticised a lot recently for using it...

(starts laughs hysterically).

Well you were defending her the other day on twitter! [Ed.note: this was before Azealia Banks got banned for her comments made about Zayn Malik/any celebrity ever]

I mean, not for that! I am fascinated by her. I really love her music, obviously. But I am fascinated with the fact that she's just so confident in her own talent and quality of work that she just will say absolutely anything and she doesn't care what bridges are burned or what opportunities it costs her. I just think that's hilarious that she'll be so fucking reckless and crazy.

She's one in a million.

Yeah she's crazy. I don't think it's necessarily okay for her to be using the word faggot, as a cis-woman. I get that's she's queer but I don't think that's a word for her to be reclaiming or throwing around. But at the same time, Azealia Banks calling Perez Hilton a faggot, I don't see how that harms me specifically, because Perez Hilton is a faggot. He's a piece of shit. I'm never going to defend him from anything. He can fucking die. Yeah, so I'm not going to go into that for Perez Hilton. She's a queer black woman, so I don't see how "faggot" necessarily has any institutional power to enact violence on to white gay men, who are primarily the ones getting upset about it. I don't think it's okay but at the same time, I'm not like offended enough to be speaking out about it. Whatever. If she wants to be fucking crazy, I'm going to let her.

When I play your music to my friends, they sometimes think of 'Michete' as a concept, like a character. I think a lot of people would think that listening to your music for the first time. But speaking to you today, and getting to understand you a bit more, that's doesn't necessarily seem to be the case.

Absolutely not. No. Michete is definitely not a character, or an alter-ego or anything. It's definitely not that. Michete is just who I am. Obviously within the context of my work it's larger than life but I think that's how you have to be. But it's very, 1000%, authentic self-expression. It's definitely not me playing a role. I'm not a drag queen.