Bristol based collective Split Prophets have been one of the most consistent groups operating in the UK hip-hop scene in recent years. They’ve released quality collaborative projects, and MC’s such as Upfront MC, Res One and DatKid have built up significant reputation’s as solo artists. 2016 brings their debut full crew studio LP ‘Delta Bravo Kilo’, and it’s most definitely worth the wait.
The LP gets underway with ‘The Mojo’, and the jazzy flute sample quickly gets chopped and turned into a crisp boom bap backing for the Bristolian crew to announce their arrival. Upfront MC’s rapid verse and unique bar structure is a perfect kick off for ‘Delta Bravo Kilo’, and instantly hooks you in. ‘This Is War’ follows, and it still hits as brutally hard as when the video was first uploaded to YouTube; Upfront, Bil Next and Paro trade verses over a loud, textured boom bap beat, and they effortlessly showcase why the Prophets are some of the most respected lyricists in the UK.
“I ain’t never gave a shred of a shit, why would I start now” says DatKid on ‘Make Your Mark’, a gritty onslaught that proves yet again the sheer resilience and skill that SP have in their roster. Both the bars and the beats across ‘Delta Bravo Kilo’ are of the highest quality, and with no features or guest producers, the Split Prophets ranks are not to be tested. ‘Roadhouse’ is an energetic, rowdy cut; the Bristolian crew have refined their raw sound, and the diverse collection of MCs come together to deliver a hard-hitting, consistently entertaining LP.
Upfront and DatKid collaborate on the upbeat ‘Tung Fu’, demonstrating tough lyrical acrobatics with tight rhyme schemes and obvious chemistry. ‘Super Organisms’ is a further contribution to the eclectic production styles on the LP, and it’s a testament to the lyrical and instrumental caliber that the Prophets sound this good over a variety of beats with a variety of flows. The witty ‘Suck My Art’ is a scathing analysis of wack MC’s and general wastemen, ‘K.A.O.E.M.’ is a professional, slick offering and the title track closes the Prophets debut group album out with a bang.
With an arsonal of talented MC’s, and cohesive, exciting production from BadHabitz, the ‘Delta Bravo Kilo’ album is a force to be reckoned with. Split Prophets are one of the leading forces, pushing real, raw hip-hop from the British shores to global rap listeners. The bar’s been set high with this one, and the movement is only just getting started.
By Sam Bennett