Dave East – Slow Down ft. Jazzy Amra

New York’s chosen one has been enjoying quiet the ascension, becoming the ladies favourite, he’s beginning to propel to a whole new level of stardom, however, the quality of his music, nor the quantity has suffered, as he drops another lil’ gem to vibe to..

With Slow Down, Dave takes the role of big bro, and shares some insights on the laid back track, pushing the motivational raps, he really steps into his own and is able to give us something relevant with no need to conform or switch things up. Featuring the young Jazzy Amra, who herself does not disappoint in the slightest, if anything, she only bolsters the cut with her catchy hook, and I’m certainly checking for more from the clearly talented singer/songwriter.

While Dave East is still up and coming, it’s as if he can do no wrong, with his Def Jam debut on the way, he has clearly put himself in a great position as he continues to solidify his status as one of the premier lyricists in the game. (Shout out Wayno, as he clearly has his finger on the pulse with these acts).

Paranoia: A True Story, Out 18th August

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Quiñ – Sticky Situation ft. Syd

The Galacticat returns with a new visual (following the release of I’m Good), for her collaboration with The Internet’s lead Syd. Sticky Situation pairs the two vocalists together as they sing over the wavy Krysshun production.

It’s a fairly relatable record, with a theme that is common to some extent, but they really make it so much more than that. Many are familiar with Syd’s beautiful vocals, captivating us as part of The Internet, whilst Quiñ is steadily rising as one of the most distinct talents around, with her soulful tone, both provide a sensual take, on this wavy production, courtesy of the dream girl’s longtime collaborator. There is not much required to be said in all honesty, as the two songstresses with voices as beautiful as their auras unite for an upbeat, feel-good record.

The video, directed by Gerard Bush and Christopher Renz, captures Quiñ’s evident beauty (accentuated by outfit choices), with a female love interest, which I liked, and feel odd pointing out as I like it for it’s normality, even if it does happen to be a rare occurrence. With her Dream Girl EP on it’s way, and Galactica still a fan favourite, this will definitely raise more interest, as fans hope for more visuals and sensual vibes for our satisfaction.

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Donnie – Running

The Prime boy drops a new money counting banger, with Running

With Prime’s frontman being underrated, you can imagine how it is for the rest of the clique, as Canada’s Quavo has been dominating for a while now, solo and on features (such as the Jimmy and Smoke Dawg collab, Humana), comes through with this new cut. A collaborative production effort from Richie Souf, Amir Jamm & 416 Small, the midtempo track with it’s layers sets the vibe for Donnie to run through the beat as he does with his money.  It’s a trap banger, with themes of the plug, fancy trips and thumbing through the money as he counts his profits up. Sung like a love song the way he emphasises with his tone, and it works, as it can easily be transitioned as such, the way it’s lyrically structured. Making a catchy song is one thing, continuously is another, and Donnie is no stranger to that.

Look out for more in the near future, as they Prime boys continue to build their fanbases, establish the brand and gain the accolades that their abilities deserve.

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Lady Leshurr – #UNLESHED 3 (Humble Freestyle)

The leading female rapper’s coronation clearly continues, as she flips Kendrick’s leading single for the third instalment in her #Unleshed series.

I’m always full of praise for the Birmingham rapper, because she did what many couldn’t, and without conforming. At one point she was overlooked for a variety of reasons, nobody considered her a front runner amongst the women, let alone in general, and while so many of her competition faded away or gave up, she kept going. There was a large period where she was only the female rapper putting music out, and not to knock anyone else’s strife, but in reality she outworked the guys, and connected with an audience that paid her attention whilst so many of us did not. Now enjoying the fruits of that labour, she has only gone on to work even harder as she looks to continue the success, and so she flips the K.Dot single with her own style, full of that wit and charm with which she has captivated millions, she boasts more, with that evident confidence and rightfully so, as she basically levels with Kendrick with tricky flows of her own. She gets a little personal too towards the end, amongst the jokes, she shares more of her feelings, giving more insight into what to possibly expect from the upcoming (highly anticipated) EP.

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Dappy – Straight Facts

The NDubz frontman has had his fair share of ups and downs, from reaching heights that most in the scene were unaware was possible, arena tours and plaques, to headlines, court-cases and and a prison stint. In this candid rap, he bares all..

From his NDubz days, through to the Tarzan freestyles, Dappy was no stranger to controversy, a supposed ego could have rubbed people the wrong way, could it have been a result of the superstardom, or possibly an abundance of drugs, the one thing not in question however, is his talent, that remains undeniable. He attempted to vent on No Regrets before the honest offering of Beautiful Me, unfortunately, despite it’s success (and further proof of his ability) it was not enough to make amends entirely. Whilst he faced his demons head on, the industry and the scene itself continued to develop, and upon his return from prison, he took to what he knows best to open up further and shed light on what was really happening.

This introspective cut possesses that same confidence we’re accustomed to, but from a mature and humbled position, that hunger in his voice is replaced with pain, as he begins with, “when I was sky high, not many of you wanted to see me fall, one big ego but I was mentally small, I thought I was the man..telling everybody what to do, when really they were just using me including my skrilla too”, he continues with more humility and understanding, and a sense of fearlessness as he shares more. From tabloid stories being sold, dodgy label deals to the descriptive moment of him losing his father (he’s spoken on it before but not to this level), Dappy intensely flows, reminding us who really opened some of the doors, “Talk about being terrorised..like say I’m gonna fall back, your favourite artist now..started as my support act”, before paying respects to the current leaders of the scene. The narrative of him not looking after himself, putting others first, paranoia and ultimately suffering from the leeches around serves as a foundation as he switches up into his intentions from here on.

I was concerned for his mental wellbeing, as it really can take its toll, but he seems stronger than given credit for, and though we’re yet to see whether he is still facing backlash for use of the N-word or other situations which have occurred in the past, one thing is for certain, if he has learnt from his past and continues to deliver quality content, this honesty is appreciated and he’ll find himself back at the top again for sure.

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Ard Adz – Went From (Freestyle)

“If you rich darg..then you pissed darg, I’m hella hungry and you lookin’ like my iftaar”

Ard Adz has developed a loyal fanbase over the years, and with freestyles such as this it makes sense as to how, continuing to flow and throw words together like it’s too easy, with this Went From freestyle, he even touches on some political themes, “I’m always wishing man all the best..I’m no hater, tell Theresa to suck on my nuts..I vote labour”, before getting back to the streets, “They like blud..you always danking, I bought four tents..none of dems for camping”. It’s catchy from the get go down to the last bar, and will help serve the fans before he readies the new wave..

 

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Reeko Squeeze – Behind Barz

One of the hardest working up and comers, Reeko Squeeze continues to build his fanbase up, after the Faze Miyake feature to this freestyle

Reeks has no intentions to fade out as he readies more tracks out the stash, but feeds the fans with an assortment of sets and features in the mean time. With this Behind Barz, he looks to cement his style, “Andy Murray..I’m serving, one more strike and it’s curtains..”, he raps, with that recognisable tone and catchy flow. Things have not hit off as well as expected for the young artist, but really it’s not the route he’s taking, as he creates his own lane and is unafraid to match the effort required to do so. People are taking note and it’s merely a matter of time before he really makes his deserved entrance.

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Worms T – Algerie Maroc

France has somewhat established itself with it’s migrants in it’s history, including Senegal, Algeria and Morocco, they have been blessed with stars across music, sports and more. As times progress and truths unravel, not to mention the evident racism within such countries, people tend to relate with their ancestral/parental countries. With many paying homage to their founding nations, French rapper Worms T pays respects with his Moro featured, Algerie Maroc

Though it could be considered more of a regular rap, it shines light on their heritage and overall adds to the picture painted on struggle. There have been disagreements between both sides, so another positive factor is the similarities and unification of the two. Really the track is shining light on Worms T, as he continues to pave his way towards being one of the leading rappers in the game.

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Tinie Tempah – Holy Moly

I remember predicting his mainstream rise back in 2009, not long after Pass Out was released, and I guess the rest as they say is history, he went on to break all sorts of records and boundaries as a premier artist, despite criticisms, but focused as ever, the London artist continued to prevail and withstand adversity, not only in becoming an elite act, but maintaining the position.

Fast forward to 2017, with the release of his third album, Youth, Tinie established a new narrative for urban music within the UK, silencing critics and removing the smoke and mirrors to reveal the levels of success he has actually achieved, to show the breakthrough and game-changing strides taken. His album boasted some of the biggest singles of the year, the acts and producers worked with have gone onto gain more success, producer Nana Rogues for example, who since has worked with superstar Drake on his More Life project. A portrayal of Tinie’s status can be depicted through the latest video, Holy Moly

A more aggressive tone from the usually laid-back rapper, it has more boastful nuances than usual, but it’s not only motivational, setting him a part from those with negative opinions but it’s also unapologetic, as he unleashes upon the uptempo Shift K3y production, highlighting his success but also the work rate that went in towards obtaining as such. Tinie and his Disturbing London imprint (along side his manager Dumi Oburota) have continued to go from strength to strength, with regular festival residencies, from Ibiza to Dubai, a partnership with Smart car, and not to mention the growing roster, featuring African superstar Wiz Kid.

This video, filmed across Europe, for a track that balances the more clean-cut tracks, compliments the record and helps visualise not only the mindset but Tinie’s artistry which tends to get overlooked by his actual success. For anyone assuming there was a decline or inconsistency, thinking again, as Tinie Tempah’s passion for music, the evident work ethic and undeniable business acumen is only propelling him even further.

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Pakman – Active ft. Young Smokes

Big Pakachino continues his legendary run, with this new video, linking up with up and coming Birmingham rapper, Young Smokes.

Since the release of his 2017 EP, Still Legendary, Pak-Man comes through with more new music, this time with the 5ive Beatz produced Active. Pak has been one of the most overlooked rappers in the country, as he continues his independent takeover, with an ever-growing fanbase, the trap star returns with more high-end rhymes, painting those lyrical come-up lines, “Active..now I got my cash right, had a mad life, now my jackets cost a bag-five..”, few can out rap him, especially when it comes to these light-trap rhymes, “Trap star..you already know this, pull up in a flash car..my watch cost a whole brick..”, it’s these exact bars with his fierce delivery, that has fans locked in on his every word, as he consistently raises the bar each time. Active also introduces to many, the up and coming Birmingham rapper, Young Smokes, who partners up with Pak on the hook duties, but also follows in the lane that some could give the South London rapper credit for, as Smokes not only impresses with his unique tone and catchy melody but his verse is on point, kicking off with, “I make a deal with the plug and then shake hands, my money’s fat for elastic..I break bands”, continuing to flow with, “I went and told my sales..look, I don’t do ticks, now the rolex on my wrist..it don’t do ticks”. 

With his EP still circulating, and now new music and visuals on the way, the bossy rapper continues to set pace, and shine light on others, and no doubt many will now be checking for Young Smokes too, as he joins the ranks of stars rising out of Birmingham.

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