tue 22/10/2019

rap

CD: Freddie Gibbs & Madlib - Bandana

Don't let the presence of nerds' favourite Madlib on production duties fool you: this is a big bad bastard of a West Coast rap record. It's a cocaine-wholesaling, n-wording, gun-toting, dog-eat-dog-ing, murderous bastard of a rap record, in fact....

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CD: Lizzo - Cuz I Love You

Cuz I Love You starts with a big, bold, black-and-white soul moment, an album title hauled from the heavens via the lungs of an extraordinary pop star. It’s a stunning rush of feeling from Lizzo, the Minneapolis-based singer and rapper, alone in the...

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Drake, O2 Arena review - stadium hip-hop has a sincerity problem

Drake walked on water at times in his opening show at the O2 Arena. Sadly this was solely down to the impressive video projection that filled the giant screens beneath his feet. The 32-year-old Canadian rapper is one of the biggest-selling stars in...

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Albums of the Year 2018: Janelle Monáe - Dirty Computer

Janelle Monáe had already established herself as pop’s next great innovator with The ArchAndroid and Electric Ladyland, two albums full of earworms, high production and retro-futuristic lyrics. This all-too-brief musical career seemed in jeopardy...

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10 Questions for DJ / producer Rob Smith of Smith & Mighty

Rob Smith & Ray Mighty are truly the unsung heroes of British bass music. Coming out of the same cultural melting pot in Bristol that gave us Massive Attack, Tricky, Portishead and mega-producer Nellee Hooper, they looked to be among the city's...

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Best Albums of 2018

Disc of the Day reviews new albums, week in, week out, all year. Below are the albums to which our writers awarded five stars. Click on any one of them to find out why. Baxter Dury, Etienne de Crécy and Delilah Holliday - B.E.D. ★★★★★ A small...

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CD: Tom Morello – The Atlas Underground

Tom Morello is an angry man – and he has a lot to be angry about in these "interesting times". From the righteous rap, metal and rock of Rage Against the Machine and supergroup Audioslave to folk protest songs in the guise of The Nightwatchman (and...

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Matangi/Maya/M.I.A. review - not your average popstar

Why is M.I.A. such a problematic pop star? Why can't she just shut up and release a hit? Tellingly, this is the very question the singer poses at the start of Matangi/Maya/M.I.A - a question she's been asked throughout her career, from interviewers...

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CD: Death Grips - Year of the Snitch

Death Grips are a self-proclaimed “conceptual art exhibition anchored by sound and vision” who are forever threatening to split up, but don’t let that put you off. Year of the Snitch, their sixth album in as many years, is an experimental hip hop...

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CD: Big Narstie - BDL Bipolar

The Bass Defence League campaigns for mental health. As with everything Big Narstie does, there are serious points in this release wedged next to the broadest comedy, and it’s no coincidence, as we learn from the vivid parody of “BDL Protest” intro...

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CD: Kanye - Ye

Would it come as a terrible surprise to learn that this record is highly problematic? Well, duh. Kanye West is the sad clown narrating the global tragicomedy, a troll on an epochal scale, a bundle of contradictory drives all attempting to express...

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Hip Hop Evolution, Sky Arts review - foundations of a revolution

Comprehensively charting hip hop’s rise from the underground to the mainstream is no mean feat, but that’s exactly what Canadian MC Shad aims to do over four hour-long episodes. Originally shown in the US in 2016, and available in full on Netflix,...

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