Following on from yesterday's post and last night's utter madness on Logan Sama's show I felt there were two relevant items to bring to the table.
I'm sure you get the point that I am making ...
Simon Reynolds's review of 'Run The Road Volume 1' for The Observer - Sunday 14 November 2004
Grime is our hip hop, the final coming of a Brit rap that's not merely a pale reflection of the original. To American ears reared on 'the real thing', grime sounds disconcertingly wrong - the halting, blurting MC cadences don't flow, the gap-toothed grooves seem half-finished and defective.
But if grime doesn't have a hope in hell with America's hip hop heartland, right now it's got the edge over 'the real thing'. The records sound cheap'n'nasty next to US rap's glossy productions, but grime's way with rhythm and sound is far more jaggedly futuristic. More crucially, grime has a feeling of desperation that American hip hop has largely lost. Individual rappers may still follow rags-to-riches trajectories, but as a collective enterprise, hip hop has won. It dominates pop culture globally. The music oozes a sense of entitlement, something you can also see in that lordly look of blasé disdain that's de rigueur in rap videos nowadays. In America, rising MCs rhyme about the luxury goods and opulent lifestyle they don't yet have because it's also so much more within reach.
As a sound, grime is still very much an underdog, and so its fantasies of triumph and living large are much more precarious and affecting. There's a definite ceiling to how much money can be made on the underground scene. Selling 500 singles is a result, shifting a thousand is a wild success; nobody in grime, not even Dizzee Rascal, has really mapped out a crossover career path yet.
You can hear all this in the music, in those pinched, scrawny voices - the sound of energy squeezing itself through the tiniest gap and grabbing for a chance that no doubt will prove to be a mirage. All of the guys (plus occasional gal) on Run the Road already feel like legends in their own minds. Standout track 'Chosen One' by Riko & Target distils that sense of destiny and destination. Over sampled soundtrack strings, Riko imagines himself as a star on satellite TV, then offers counsel that applies equally to other aspiring MCs and to street soldiers dealing with adversity: 'Stay calm/ Don't switch/ Use composure, blood/Use your head to battle through, cos you are the chosen one.'
Read the rest HERE
Logan Sama - Kiss 100 - Tuesday 3rd August 2010
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