Monday, 31 December 2007

Lee Brasco - Drastic Measures

Excuse me for bringing up old news, but Lee Brasco has got some new promotional material on his myspace. Thanks to my lateness its not as new as it should be, but I've only really listened to it properly today. Either way, the standard is decent, so props to him. If you're even later than me than you can download 'Drastic Measures' here.

It's free material, so you probably don't expect a mater-piece but this is good - the tracks have nice concepts, as can be seen on 'Grime DVDs' for example, and related to that there is good word play while staying true to the grime sound.

As an E3 resident some top producers are not too far away, so Lee Brasco has got Wiley on there ('Grime DVDs') and Ruff Sqwad bredrins Rapid ('The Block'), and Scholar ('Sweet Dreams' and 'Smoking Cigarettes'). Merlin and Jazdeep also feature on the producco. 'My Diary' is a sweetboy tune but I like it, and 'On The Block' and 'Shower Kids' are large.

Brasco is to one to watch in 2008. An unoriginal choice, but what. Some further unorginal choices for 2008 success - ICE KID (just watch when his voice breaks), Double S, and I can see maybe Kano and Dylan once again embracing the grime sound. Big things for this scene in 2008, make sure you're a part of it.

Sunday, 30 December 2007

FWD>> New Year's Eve

Anyone reaching? I would love to go but unfortunately plans have already been made. If you're thinking about turning up then don't forget that you have to purchase a ticket in advance.

Logan Set Videos

Little Nasty:

'kicked out of school because I hotted up teachers'.

No wonder no-one wants to do the job these days.

Tuesday, 25 December 2007

'And If You Don't Like It, Put It In Your Pipe and Pipe It'

Merry Christmas one and all. I'm feeling a bit under the weather today, which I reckon is a little bit unfortunate to be honest. But I just drew for some Newham Generals and now I'm feeling miraculously better.

If your presents aren't very good then download this set with Skepta, JME, Syer and Essentials. Mak 10 and Spyro have a show on Rinse today, with Maximum very possibly turning up as well, so start formulating your excuses from the Christmas table now.

But whether you manage to drag yourself away or not - have a good one.

Thursday, 20 December 2007

'When I was on the Rinse 1 double 0 3 you were in your bedroom cuz listening to me'

I remember when I used to watch the bonus footage on Roll Deep's 'In At the Deep End', and Flow Dan spat that lyric in some car. I've always liked it.

'Sending Season' is in overdrive right about now, with Edmonton's war of words not slowing down and the Flow Dan under fire himself from Taliban. Not any Afghan freedom fighter, but former crew member Trim/Javan/Trimothy/Trimbale/etc. Have a listen for yourself on Trim's myspace.

Both Trim and the Dan were on Rinse last Sunday. It was a good set. In fact, Boy Better Know/Roll Deep and the Newham Generals have provided some really good radio in the past few weeks.

Check all of the latest Rinse podcasts at here

Monday, 17 December 2007

Westwood 1Xtra - Skepta and JME Video

I've shamelessly nicked this off another blog, which is well worth having a look at:

1Xtra in New York - JME & Skepta freestyle from BBC 1Xtra on Vimeo.


Westwood - what's the deal? After stating his intentions to take Boy Better Know to New York, the grime scene had certain expectations. There was a little interview and about 10 minutes of spitting, with a spot of Skepta murkery:

'I want a 100 per cent not 50/50, I get money but my name ain't 50, went to the lloyd bank and took out a young buck'...

Westwood is a hip-hop head, and you can't expect him to fully embrace grime immediately at hip-hop's expense. However he perhaps could have integrated them more into the show. Skepta's 'what?! Is that what we're going on?' when the big dawg put on Soulja Boy said quite a lot, and LL Cool J rounded things off by talking poop.

What are his motives? Wiley's statement that Westwood thinks 'POW is the start of my scene' shows suspicions from grime's heart. Chipmunk, while a good prospect, has been on his Sunday show at least four times in the past couple of months, and Westwood's inability or refusal to hold a basic conversation with an artist about their music or the scene is one that throws Logan's hosting style into great contrast.

That's not to say Westwood's attention isn't totally unwelcome. As a globally-known DJ he is able to introduce a new audience to grime, and MCs have the platform of good quality radio that is broadcast nationwide.

Westwood can help grime. But does he cares for the music?

Dirty Canvas - 29 December

This looks live.

Sunday, 16 December 2007

You Do the Maths

I stumbled across a brief review of 'Maths and English' today, in a list of the fifty 'best' albums of 2007.

5 Maths and English - Dizzee Rascal

'While grime flourished on mixtape, its former standard-bearers tried slipping into the mainstream. Dizzee Rascal led the way, as usual, his third album waving goodbye to the jagged beats of Bow for a glossier embrace of hip hop conventions and Lily Allen collaborations. A triumph'.

Who are the 'standard-bearers'? It seems even the journalists, along with every other grime MC, can't refuse the temptation of a Wiley indirect. Wiley may not have 'blown', but he's never tried to be accepted by the mainstream through 'slipping' in. Will is still the face of the grime movement and has released an album this year that has been well-received while literally staying true to 'the beats of Bow' (and without Lily Allen).

The fact that grime beats are 'jagged' and a hip hop approach is 'glossier' could be seen as a euphemism for accusations of Dizzee 'selling out'. I certainly didn't see the album as grime when I first listened to it, and I still don't, but it is actually a very good album, proably better than I originally gave it credit for. 'Maths and English' has the unity that 'Showtime' didn't, and it is unfair to compare it to the frankly untouchable 'Boy In Da Corner'. 'Maths and English' isn't 'a triumph', certainly not for grime, but maybe it is for Dizzee personally as an artist, and maybe it is as the first widely accepted UK Hip Hop album.

But, then again, we all want another 'Hold Ya Mouf' or 'Stop Dat'. Yeah - a Dizzee Rascal mixtape in 2008 would be nice.

Saturday, 15 December 2007

'I'm the King of Grime, and I will be for a very long time...'

I assume Tinchy isn't getting a christmas card from Ghetto this year, after he proclaimed live on national radio that he isn't merely the 'star in the hood', but 'star in the country, star in Essex'. I don't even know why he's talking about Essex but it does go to show that, rather than festive season, its sending season.

'Sending Season' does offer an insight into the politics of grime, which are becoming increasingly farcical. At the moment, the self-proclaimed 'King of Grime' is sending for the 'Prince of Grime' after a prolonged battle with the widely perceived 'King of Grime'. The original 'King of Grime' has, like King Lear, relinquished the monarchy and is now the 'godfather' - not any Marlon Brando though, but more like the supreme guardian over the squabbling siblings.

I don't even understand any of these monikers. And why is GH actually sending for Stryder? Perhaps time will tell...

Friday, 14 December 2007

GH - Freestyle (Westwood 1Xtra)


Ears - Where?

Have you seen this man?

Despite 'A Breath of Fresh Ears' not enjoying a great reception, I think he's still a good MC, and one that emerged triumphant in his Lord of the Mics 2 battle with a nominee for 'Best Newcomer' at the MOBOs (don't ever doubt Tinchy isn't making that mainstream money).

I hope he returns with some material some time next year. For now have a look at the Practice Hours Freestyle...

Thursday, 13 December 2007

Peng Food

This is a CD with high expectations after Frisco's 'Back 2 Da Lab Volume 2', so I'm just gonna say that talking about the cover isn't that trivial. Really.

I reckon it looks decent, despite Fris seemingly standing in the middle of a favela at night. The title did make me laugh, but perhaps I missed the point - Big Fris doesn't have to reach the lab anymore to make hits.

The single is 'Skengman Mode', with features from youngers and fellow Alwayz Recordings artists Chipmunk and Double S. The tune is ridiculously catchy; Logan has been rinsing it for about the last 16 weeks and its not even getting on my nerves yet.

The mixtape will inevitably face comparisons with 'Back 2 Da Lab Volume 2', easily one of the best mixtapes of 2007, but Fris has established himself as a big MC and I expect good things. A video for 'Skengman Mode' is coming soon, and check back for a full review after the CD's general release.

You get more details on Frisco's myspace.

Wednesday, 12 December 2007

"I'm a Newham Gen To the End"

The Newham Generals are too much.

For me, their new album 'Generally Speaking' is the most anticipated release of 2008. I can't wait to get my hands on it. Despite the loss of Monkstar's distinctive style that complemented Dee and Foots so well, the duo continue to keep moving forward.

I'm watching this video a lot at the moment.

Newham Generals - Dubplate Drama Freestyle

Grime Wikipedia

Have you heard about this?

If you haven't, then its probably what you think it is...

Big shout out to the RWD Forum, especially the creator Hijimi, who have attempted to compile the first ever grime encyclopedia. The database has been in progress for around three months now, and it should be in good order sometime early in the new year.

Have a look, bearing in mind there's the artwork to complete, and the add the grime wikipedia myspace to support the project.

O.G Season

With the time of year it seems like a good time to review what has happened in 2007, as well as having a look at the state of the scene.

However, some big mixtapes are still planned for release, including Griminal's 'Not Just Bars' and Little Nasty's 'Hungry Season'.

Also planned for release is O.G's 'OG Season', a CD that I'm quite excited about. This crew have made moves despite only being around proper for 4-6 months, and its not hard to see why: they have a top-boy on the buttons in Young Dot, established solo-artists in Little Dee, Jendor and P. Money, and they've been all over Rinse FM in the last few months, playing more than a part in some really memorable sets. The Myspace is still under construction, but still have a look

I'm not really on an ends-hype, but it is nice to see a grime act from South London doing their thing in the face of the current North and East London dominance. All that's needed now is for West London's Ice-Kid to release a mixtape...

This Is The Beginning

What's good?

This has been on my mind for a while now, and what with the New Year fast approaching I thought why not start my blog now? I want to start writing again and I thought that starting a blog was the best way of doing it...

I reckon I'll be fully going in a couple of weeks to coincide with the New Year, but please check back - I plan to update the blog half-regularly so it should be worth the bandwidth.

Thanks for visiting.