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Genre-Bending Group Voiced By BAEKHYUN, ØZI, Tobi Lou And Cal Scruby Will Debut Single “PARANOIA” On October 23
October 16, 2023
7 Min Read
[This unedited press release is made available courtesy of Game Developer and its partnership with notable game PR-related resource Games Press]
Riot Games |
LOS ANGELES - OCTOBER 16, 2023 - Leading video game developer and publisher Riot Games today revealed HEARTSTEEL, an all-new virtual band starring reimagined versions of beloved League of Legends champions Ezreal (vocalist), Kayn (rapper, instrumentalist), Aphelios (instrumentalist, songwriter), Yone (producer), K’Sante (co-leader, vocalist), and Sett (co-leader, rapper). HEARTSTEEL is the latest group to debut from Riot Games Music (RGM), which is known for being a leader in virtual artistry with fan-favorite acts including K/DA, Pentakill, True Damage and more.
HEARTSTEEL is a group of dynamic daredevils dedicated to unapologetic individuality and creative expression. Their mission is to blaze a path to success on their own terms. The group’s personality and sound draws inspiration from modern music collectives, and a range of influences from across genres and eras, culminating in a bold, one-of-a-kind identity. HEARTSTEEL’s character-forward songwriting and relentless energy are encapsulated in their upcoming debut single, “PARANOIA.” Fans can watch the “PARANOIA” music video on YouTube or listen to the track on all major listening platforms starting on Monday, October 23 at 8:00AM PT. “Riot’s virtual artists have been some of the most innovative and beloved music moments for our players” said Maria Egan, Global Head of Music & Events at Riot Games Entertainment. “The idea of an all-male band has long been speculated on by fans and we’re so excited to bring this fantasy to life. HEARTSTEEL is a deep collaboration between all our talented in-house creative teams and some incredible new artists. The ethos of HEARTSTEEL is a supergroup of musical soulmates greater than the sum of its parts - a philosophy that our community embodies every day through their dedication to our games.” HEARTSTEEL joins the ranks of Riot’s chart-topping virtual artists whose music spans across all genres. Prior to creating HEARTSTEEL, RGM launched record-breaking, global pop supergroup K/DA, featuring League of Legends champions Ahri, Kai’Sa, Evelynn and Akali. The group’s debut single “POP/STARS” was recently certified Platinum by the RIAA, and its music video became the most successful debut for a K-pop group in YouTube history with over 560M YouTube views to date. Additionally, RGM also developed heavy metal band Pentakill, who have amassed over 460 million monthly listeners on Spotify and more than 200 million streams across DSPs. RGM also established a presence in hip-hop with the virtual group True Damage, whose music has reached over 165 million streams across DSPs. All three acts have performed live at the League of Legends World Championships throughout the competition’s history. Songs by all virtual artists are included in RGM’s robust catalog of over 750 songs, which has over 10 billion streams across DSPs. HEARTSTEEL will feature collaborations with renowned musical artists from a variety of genres: BAEKHYUN as Ezreal, ØZI as Sett, Tobi Lou as K'Sante and Cal Scruby as Kayn.
BAEKHYUN is a member of the K-pop group EXO and SuperM, and is recognized as one of the top vocalists in K-pop. His previous credits include three successful mini-albums (City Lights, Delight, and Bambi) as a soloist, as well as various standalone singles and OSTs. Particularly noteworthy is his global popularity, marked by achieving his 9th million-seller record, encompassing both group and solo albums.
Cal Scruby is a Los Angeles based rapper best-known for his clever lyrics and quirky visuals. His music touches on relatable topics with an array of sports references and self-deprecating humor. In addition to Riot, he has previously partnered with top brands including the NFL, EA Sports, and Ciroc Vodka.
Born in Los Angeles and raised in Taipei, ØZI rose to stardom through his illustrious career in the Mandarin music scene. His versatility as a singer-songwriter, music producer, performer, and creative director has earned him countless accolades in the industry. His debut album "ØZI: The Album" was recognized with six nominations at the prestigious Golden Melody Awards, the highest honors in Mandarin music, and he was also awarded "Best New Artist."
Tobi Lou is a multi-talented artist who has made a significant impact on the contemporary music scene. Born in Nigeria but raised in Chicago, Lou has carved out a unique lane for himself, where he fuses elements of hip-hop, R&B and pop with undeniable melodies. His breakout single, "Buff Baby," garnered him significant attention and positioned Lou as an artist to watch.
For more information, please visit Riot Games Music on X, Instagram, TikTok, and Facebook.
### About Riot Games Riot Games was founded in 2006 to develop, publish, and support the most player-focused games in the world. In 2009, Riot released its debut title, League of Legends, to worldwide acclaim. League has gone on to be the most-played PC game in the world and a key driver of the explosive growth of esports. With League in its second decade, Riot is continuing to evolve the game while delivering new experiences to players with Teamfight Tactics, Legends of Runeterra, VALORANT, League of Legends: Wild Rift, Riot Forge, and multiple work-in-progress titles. Riot is also expanding the world of Runeterra through multimedia projects across music, comic books, board games, and Arcane, its Emmy-winning animated series. Founded by Brandon Beck and Marc Merrill, Riot is headquartered in Los Angeles, California, and has 4,500+ Rioters in 20+ offices worldwide. About Riot Games Music Riot Games Music builds on Riot’s fandom at the intersection of gaming and music — fostering partnerships with artists who can take the global player experience to the next level through music, live events, and IP expansion. RGM has amassed a catalog of over 750 songs including nine original Esports Anthems for the annual League of Legends World Championships, which have collectively amassed billions of streams across DSPs. These anthems have been performed by superstars including Lil Nas X, Imagine Dragons, Zedd and many more. Riot Games Music is also known for being a leader in virtual artistry including artists like K/DA, a record breaking K-Pop inspired girl-group based on some of the most popular female champions in League of Legends, whose music has received over 1.2 billion streams. Their single “POP/STARS” recently was certified platinum by the RIAA, and they have amassed over 2 million followers on Spotify. Other Riot virtual artists include HEARSTEEL, heavy metal band Pentakill, hip-hop band True Damage, DJ Sona and Seraphine. RGM also created Sessions, a music project focused around creators, available for anyone to use without concern of copyright strikes. About League of Legends Released in 2009, "League of Legends" is Riot Games' debut title and one of the most-played competitive games in the world, engaging millions of players daily in 20+ officially-supported languages. A mainstay of the MOBA genre, in "League", two teams of five powerful champions face off to destroy each other's base in a game that blends the speed, strategy, and intensity of an RTS with immersive RPG elements.
"League" continues to evolve year over year in gameplay and storytelling, delivering fresh new experiences like K/DA, immersive stories like Star Guardian and Spirit Blossom, and technical balance changes to ensure competitive integrity. As the basis for the Runeterra universe, League champions have been featured in music, comic books, spinoff games, collectible figurines, board games, TV series, and more. The annual League of Legends World Championship is the most widely viewed esport tournament, and is among the largest and most popular sporting events in the world.
Visit leagueoflegends.com for more information and follow @leagueoflegends on social media.
MEDIA CONTACTS Lindsay Honig [email protected] Hanna Woo [email protected] Steven Earnest [email protected]
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