Veteran UK lyricists Wordsmiff FLIP and Spitfire come together as The Otha Guys to deliver this tight-knit, ten-track project. They give us a fresh slice of pure, uncut British hip-hop in it’s truest form, kicking complex patterns to hard-hitting beats, going back to back for the concise LP’s twenty-five minute runtime.
‘Acid Test’ is the first track, (well, it follows a hilarious intro to be fair) and the multisyllabic, raw onslaught of bars begins as Wordsmiff FLIP delivers witty and complex rhyme schemes over a gritty boom bap instrumental. Spitfire also kicks a hard-hitting verse with dope flow switch-ups, and the Bristolian spitter demonstrates a rough-edged percussive style that sounds heavy over the Hozay production. ‘The Otha Guys’ is in-your-face UK hip-hop at it’s best; the dope loop, heavy sample-work and aggressive lyricism combine to make an entertaining, energetic track.
‘Classic Days’ is a chilled out, crisp cut; sometimes we strive so much for forward-thinking, left-field hip-hop on these shores that we forget just how good a well constructed traditional hip-hop album can be, and Wordsmiff FLIP and Spitfire execute the beats and rhymes formula professionally and skilfully with ‘The Otha Guys’. ‘Self Made Serenade’, with it’s dope double-bass flip and upbeat, funky production is a standout, and ‘Last Request’ closes the album out with it’s unadulterated classic hip-hop sound leaving the listener exhausted from all the kicks, snares and dope rhymes.
If you’re looking for a straight up and down, no holds barred rap album from two quality British MC’s, ‘The Otha Guy’s will most definitely deliver. Wordsmiff FLIP and Spitfire have great chemistry, and the boom bap backdrop on this project is perfect for their respective styles. Sika Records have pulled it out the bag with this one, and 2016 is set to be a big year for them with forthcoming releases from Fourtwenty, Omus One and Klashnekoff sure to impress judging from this one. The Otha Guys might have made themselves the guys with this to-the-point LP.
By Sam Bennett