The UK scene has been thriving of late, with the elite further staking their claim, and newcomers rapidly rising through the ranks. Amongst them, one of the original breakthrough acts, was Bonkaz.
From his appearance four years ago in the (now classic Krept & Konan anthem) Don’t Waste My Time (Remix) alongside Stormzy, Swift (Section) and Youngs Teflon, where he held his own (though Swift might have had the hardest verse), he continued with tracks like We Run The Block, You Don’t Know (Bonkaz), Lonely and not to mention a large amount of freestyles and covers (more recently his version of Kendrick Lamar – DNA), which though showcased his versatility, it also appeared to hinder his trajectory. Some may argue consistency, others felt the lack of support, there is even suggestion that he played position and helped push others before himself, and in some ways it can be agreed, but honestly I believe he’s still finding his sound. Whenever we have an act as such who garners a predominantly female following, they become caught up in trying to cater to all. The likes of Scorcher, Griminal, even Yungen, have all faced that dilemma. Bonkaz seems to have only given hints of that potential, with his previous Fuck Fame and Mixtape Of The Year projects catering more to the streets. He is capable of delivering a solid body of work that can help propel him, I’m in no way saying he should make “girl tunes”, but rather utilise his ability to elevate the sound and himself. In his defence, he was stifled by the false allegations and accusations which he has since opened up about and put behind him. Leading to this new effort, What You Want:
The track will definitely go well at his shows, it has that amped uptempo sound, it’s in the vein of Don’t Waste My Time and Yungen’s Ain’t On Nuttin, as the catchy street anthems with potential to find themselves on rotation, unfortunately it has not yet caught that kind of response or momentum. A part of me feels its to do with the perception, maybe we’re not looking for that kind of content from Bonkaz (if this was a 67 record, there would probably be a campaign to get it to the chart), the video (as much as I appreciate the ‘different’ visual) will appeal to a younger, more diverse audience, combined with the theme of the song itself, will resonate with a select number of people, but still it’s accumulated over 50,000 views in under a week. Bonkaz’s ability shouldn’t be in question, lyrically or in creating a hit, but his versatility has clearly made things tougher, fortunately for him, he has developed a loyal core of fans and peers alike, and with the foundations for his “Romantic Rudeboy” path already laid, you can expect not only for What You Want to grow, but to hear more abstract british rap from the young talent.