Archive for July, 2016

July 25, 2016

Field Day Festival 2016 [Review]

Field Day returned to it home of Victoria Park on the 11-12th June for it’s 10th year, and this year it proceeded to open it’s doors to Grime. The festival is normally known for being a predominately indie/rock music festival, so it was intriguing that it opened it’s doors to some big names from the UK’s homegrown genre, which saw Skepta perform live on the Eat Your Own Ears main stage.

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Skepta performance was at 4pm and the clouds gave way to rain, but this did not stop people heading to watch him, and he drew in a massive crowd. As he opened with BBK’s DJ Maximum to ‘That’s Not Me’ he told the crowd how he loved them for standing there in the rain to watch him, showing his appreciation for his fans. As it continued to rain he went into his ‘Blacklisted’ track ‘Ace Hood Flow’ which most people didn’t seem to know, but it didn’t stop them enjoying themselves. He continued into ‘It Ain’t Safe’ ft. Young Lord and then brought out Shorty and Jammer whilst Maximum dropped well-known Grime track Rebound X ‘Rhythm ‘N’ Gash’ mixed into more Grime tracks whilst the three spat hard bars. Drawing near the end, the sun came out and he perfomed ‘Man (Gang)’ to a wilder crowd and everyone seemed to be skanking out.

Slimzee one of Grime’s pioneers and most influential people in the scene was up next at the bandstand, and he opened with some Wiley tunes, drawing a decent sized amount of people over to the small stage. As he played more tracks, he seemed to capture more attention and people flocked to have listen to his selection of the wickedest Grime tracks and have a good rave.

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Next up was another Boy Better Know member; Frisco who was joined by one of Grime’s hardest producer/DJ’s, Sir Spryo. The North London emcee switched up his set performing tracks from his recently released ‘System Killer’ album where you could hear the crowd spitting the bars word for word, to performing BBK’s ‘Too Many Men’ which got the crowd rowdy, along with his bars from Skepta’s ‘Detox’ and many more.

Novelist was the last but not least over on The Fader stage joined by DJ Grandmixxer and upcoming East London MC Fusion. The two created the maddest hype from the crowd, taking their t-shirts off half way through as they were jumping around so much. He got the audience chanting, ‘F**k David Cameron.’ He managed to not perform any of his own songs, just bars and tunes, reminiscent of an old skool Grime set.

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July 17, 2016

Pixies Tracks Of The Week @Duskymusic @Wileyupdates @Dapzonthemap @RayBlk_ @Prez_T @JCLARKE_GHETTS @Rudekidmusic

Dusky ft. Wiley – Sort It Out Sharon

As Dusky prepares to release his forthcoming album ‘Outer’ we hear a brand new track taken from it ‘Sort It Out Sharon’. It features the Godfather of Grime Wiley, and blends techno with Grime and 93’ rave music. Dusky bring an emergence of genres for this one making it sound rather futuristic, with Wiley flowing effortlessly over the Dance music duo’s production.

Dapz On The Map – Champion Champion

West Bromwich’s Dapz On The Map is back at it again with a brilliant new track full of passion, hunger and emotion for ‘Champion Champion’. He eases us into the track with his soulful voice, and makes us listen to his lyrics full of greatness and power on a Thomas Mellor produced beat.

Ray Blk ft. Stormzy – My Hood

Singer Ray Blk releases the visuals to her brilliant new track ‘My Hood’ which has been getting a lot of love, “Ray BLK said of the video to ‘Dazed‘ magazine, “I’ve been getting older, I’ve been realising that where I’m from is not a very nice place, to put it quite plainly. When I was younger, growing up, you don’t really realise what’s going on around you. I was saying to one of my friends, every day I’d see a police car, every day I’d hear sirens…
“But I also saw the beauty in where I’m from, like the people, the culture, so there’s good and bad and that’s what I wanted to speak about in the song.”

President T ft. JME – House & Pop

“Real veterans will do real veteran things” President T says on the intro to his Splurgeboys produced brand new track ‘House & Pop’, and that’s exactly what happens when him and JME start spitting their bars.

Ghetts & Rude Kid – Savage

Ghetts and Rude Kid drop a brilliant new video ‘Savage’ from the soundtrack of the forthcoming ‘The Intent’ film. It features footage from the film with cameos from Fekky and Femi Oyeniran, and shows Ghetts in a state of power in the cinematic visual.

 

July 11, 2016

The Sounds of UK Rap: @ReekoSqueeze @Official6ix @Sneakbo @TherealWholagun @DonStrapzy_

Reeko Squeeze

This year, Reeko Squeeze has being working hard, dropping track after track. After his separation from infamous UK Rap crew Section Boyz last year, which left fans shocked and disappointed, he went on to drop his introductory mixtape Child’s Play as a solo artist. It proved he was strong on his own and made room for himself in his own lane, collaborating with artists such as Youngs Teflon and J Hus. His new track ‘Ring Ring’ takes on a production courtesy of Loadstar, bringing a different sound to the normal street bangers he goes for. We see him flowing effortlessly over an energetic instrumental, with a chorus that matches the vigor of the beat.

 

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One of London’s hottest UK Rap crews have released another heavyweight track titled ‘Traumatised 2’. It features a haunting, ghostly, and sinister beat mixed with raw and gritty chronicles of the streets, their lives, and what they see around them. ‘Traumatised 2’ captures their authenticity, “Mans on trapping, man got skills, g money got gwop like Tesco tills, peng tings wanna lurk on Brixton Hill.” Their real bars, teamed with their original sound, have pushed them already into the limelight.

 

Sneakbo

South London rapper Sneakbo sprays bars all over his new Dancehall anthem, sampling a classic riddim ‘Bookshelf.’ Produced by iLL Blu and featuring the vocals of Nyla, Sneakbo has a surefire hit on his hands for the summer – ready to hit the clubs or be played whilst relaxing on the beach. This is his first release since being signed to Virgin EMI, and it’s clear nothing has changed with Sneakbo’s style; it’s full of energy and charisma. Sneakbo lays his bars down about a female: “10 out of 10 girl your looks are nice, get what I like I don’t watch the price / I woke up like you see tonight, I’m living life, living like I’m about to die.”

 

Wholagun

Wholagun drops one for the streets with his new track ‘I’m Sorry.’ He matches ice-cold bars with a flow that switches up and quickens. The South London rapper isn’t new to the game, and has an undeniable sound in the UK amongst other rappers, pairing minimalist beats with sharp bars. ‘I’m Sorry’ shows Wholagun telling us he’s about to mess up the game with his unruly, boisterous bars and feverish delivery: “Been looking hard and observing, if I go hard then it’s curtains, they got bars and they murking, but they ain’t like this in person,” talking about how other rappers lie in their bars and aren’t really like that. We wonder who he’s aiming that at?

 

Don Strapzy

Another artist straight out of South London, Don Strapzy has been putting in the work this year. dropping strings of videos and headlining a show at Birthdays in Dalston. ‘Write Off’ finds him going hard with a passionate and fiery delivery over a lively, upbeat production that should be turned up loud in your car or in the club. “I’m Donny and I’m all about the dolla, loyal to my family I’ll die for my honour.”

News

Beyoncé has been in London for her Formation world tour and along with dancing to Skepta and JME’s ‘That’s Not Me’ on Saturday night (July 2nd), she also brought out UK Rap crew Section Boyz for a support slot on July 3rd.

Section Boyz also have a new track out with Chris Brown, Wiz Kid and Hoody Baby titled ‘Shabba.’ It dropped on Chris Brown’s SoundCloud, and is the second time the crew have paired up with the R&B singer (the first being ‘Whippin’).

July 6, 2016

Underdog Music: Clash Meets @OfficialAvelino [Interview]

When you’re preparing to speak to a highly skilled rapper, known for mind-blowing wordplay, you know that you’re in for a good conversation. As soon as I speak my first words with Avelino he is the same charismatic, laid-back, and intelligent person as he is in his lyrics.

A prominent name in UK Rap after co-signs from BBC Radio 1 DJ Semtex, Tinie Tempah, and one of the kings of lyricism himself; Wretch 32, Avelino has spent three years of releasing mixtapes’ from ‘Underdog Music’ to ‘Iconic Ambition’ and the recent joint mixtape with Wretch himself ‘Young Fire Old Flame’. He has recently taken his unorthodox approach to music one step further with the release of his debut EP ‘FYO’ which was executive produced by Odd Child’s Raf Riley.

“It’s mood driven,” he says of his unique style. “I go by how I feel at the time and I hope that reflects in the music. Very experimental, without deviating from myself. Original, I like to be the best version of me at that time.” Perhaps this is because he spent his time in the studio, refining his skills, or due to the fact he is respectful of other artists taking time to analyse them, “I watch the behavior of people I look up to. The one mistake people might make is thinking you know it all, we don’t, you can always feed off others. Pick up things, learn things, add something to your game.“

Beginning his career with a slew of freestyles, he dropped his second mixtape ‘Iconic Ambition’ in 2013. “It was a humble mixtape. We did it on minimal resources, me and my mates,” he says. “Still, with the title and with what we tried to do with the songs kind of indicated what we were reaching for.” His ‘Young Fire Old Flame,’ mixtape with Wretch 32, released at the end of last year, was a definite step forward. “It was a mixtape with one of the icons,” he reflects. “One of the people I look up to and idolize, and we actually worked together to make a mixtape which was almost like completing part of the checklist and an amazing feat for me personally.”

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The pair dropped a now legendary freestyle on Charlie Sloth’s ‘Fire In The Booth’ which demonstrates Avelino keeping up with his idol, both artists complimenting each other in an effortlessly natural way.

“When you hear someone speak with as much excellence as Wretch 32, you know whatever you record has to be your best moment at that time, because if not it’s going to be evident,” admits Avelino. “I don’t feel there were challenges. Now that’s not saying it was easy to work with Wretch 32, because he’s maybe the greatest lyricist we’ve ever had in the country.” Avelino definitely held his own and in the words of Stormzy “Can we take a minute to pay homage to Avelino for lyrically keeping up with Wretch 32.”

He has become known as a master of lyricism, especially with regards to his wordplay. It can be quite intense, but he has crafted his lyrics with such finesse that you can only admire the end result. “There can never be too much focus on wordplay and lyricism because that is what rap is all about,” he says. “Rap is an art form where you are directly speaking to someone. You want them to replay the tune, to listen to something that they didn’t catch. For me it adds to the excitement and the enjoyment and the appreciation. It’s why I take care of every single line that I think of.” This is apparent when listening to his music, the complexity of his lyrics demand rewinds and repetition to absorb, and yet his flow and production choices keep this from ever becoming a chore.

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Keep striving, keep working, keep trying to get better…

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From his work with Wretch, to signing with MMR (More Money Records), working closely with Labrinth and his Odd Child label, it’s clear that Avelino has nestled himself with like-minded artists, feeling at home with them, “They are creative people and I always try and take away as much as I can from them. Labrinth is one of the greatest musicians I’ve seen with my own two eyes, he’s phenomenal. He’ll go through like five songs in an hour and slap out numerous ideas, leaving you trying to keep up with him. You don’t know how to tell him slow down, because I’m not keeping up with that. You always try and incorporate certain things you’ve heard from him, or certain things he’s tried, certain principles he has, certain techniques he might use.“

For his debut EP ‘FYO (Fuck Your Opinion)’ it is really a time for the Young Fire to shine, “It’s my moment to really introduce myself, and to impose myself into the area that I’m going to be in for as long as possible which is rap,” he states. He delivers his easily recognisable laid-back flow with quick clever bars in a style that has become highly definitive. When asked about his approach to his signature style he offers, “The only thought process I had before making it was consciously choosing to work so closely with Raf Riley on it. I knew he was quite left and I was quite maybe in a different place but we met in the beautiful middle and the product was almost like a hybrid alternative but still hip-hop, it was still me.”

As grime continues to thrive, not only in the UK but extending worldwide, it can sometimes feel like UK rap doesn’t get the credit it deserves in the shadow of it’s 140bpm brother, yet this isn’t something that phases the young North Londoner. “They are two different art forms and we shouldn’t be competing with grime. Let them win. Rap can win as well. I don’t want to do that whole, is that getting more recognition and how does that make rap feel, let them win and we can win as well, everyone can eat. There is enough for everyone. As long as we never get ahead of ourselves and know that there is more to be done. Keep striving, keep working, keep trying to get better, keep trying to expand and we’ll be cool. We’ll be massive, UK will get more and more love.“

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Published on clashmusic.com http://www.clashmusic.com/features/underdog-music-clash-meets-avelino on 31.05.16

July 4, 2016

Pixies Tracks Of The Week @RudeKidMusic @JCLARKE_GHETTS @ScorchersLife @splurgeboys @Fusion_IAS @Snow667 @BIGG61XXX

Rude Kid x Ghetts – Peng Tings

The dynamic duo of Grime producer Rude Kid and one of the best MC’s out of the UK join again for collaborative track ‘Peng Tings.’ Delivering a string-led bassline, with handclaps and an underlying vocals that takes ‘Peng Tings’ back to Ghetts banger ‘Sing For Me’ fused with their collaborative and recent track ‘One Take.’

Scorcher & Rocket – Maikon

This is the video track to be seen off of Scorcher and Splurgeboys new collaborative forthcoming EP. Splurgeboy’s Tee provides the production, whilst Rocket takes place on the mic along with Scorcher and they go back to back on verses.

Big 6ix ft. TE dness – Are You Mad

The 6 Figure Music camp dropped the audio to this over a month ago, and now we get the visuals to follow which are more like a movie. ‘Are You Mad’ brings a ghostly, trap beat with the two spitting fire street bars paired with solid, fierce deliveries.

Fusion ft. AJ Tracey & PK – Rudeboy RMX

East London Grime MC Fusion freshens up his track ‘Rudeboy’ with a remix featuring two hard London lyricists AJ Tracey and PK from YGG. The three go in hard over a beat produced by Fusion and Shizz McNaughty.

Snowy – Durt

 Nottingham’s Snowy delivers us a brand new cold track on his Soundcloud produced by Boogie Pro. ‘Durt’ sees him deliver some ferocious bars over a Asian influenced production that will get you skanking out when you hear it drop.