Baileys Brown and Blanka, or if you want to go by their rapping aliases Dee Green and Bewbonik, bring us their debut collaborative LP ’21 G$’, released under the name of DEDW8. This is an unashamedly murky and gloomy journey, filled with futuristic beats and hard-hitting lyricism throughout the project.
‘Next 2 Nun’ is an early highlight; the gritty, gloomy production backs Dee Green and Bewbonik as they drop hard-hitting punchlines with a confident swagger and on-point flows. There’s as much focus on the production as on the lyrics, and the haunting, crunchy boom-bap adds to the mysterious and murky aura on display throughout the project. The trap flavours of ‘Whatchukno’ are energetic, intoxicating and entertaining; the rattling hi-hats, swirling bass synth and wavy flows make for another indisputable banger, and DEDW8 are quickly affirming themselves as one of the country’s leading electronic-driven groups. The rise of collectives like Problem Child, Levelz and Dead Players have proven that the hip-hop scene in the UK has plenty of room for acts with something else to offer than traditional boom-bap, and this Bristol duo is another to add to the list of ones to watch.
‘Stoopafly’ is another synth-driven stomper; the grime and influenced flows suit the glitchy, intense production and the overall aesthetic DEDW8 deliver impresses over and over again across the ’21G$’ LP. ‘Dedrow’ is another murky track, and the looming, somber beat is a match for the two MC’s formidable and forceful lyricism; complex rhyme schemes, vivid imagery and a hedonistic attitude makes for some inspired material. ‘Born Sinnur’ too is menacing and in-your-face; the distinct sound that Dee Green and Bewbonik exploit across the project is encapsulating, and the street-wise lyricism is laced with a healthy dose of Bristolian attitude. The title-track closes the project, and the intense electronica once more backs cocky bars from the two MC’s; both the lyrics and the production are faultless across the ’21G$’ LP, and their sound is both recognisable and unique.
This is a fantastic introduction to DEDW8’s vibe, which is unique and entertaining both sonically and lyrically. The Bristolian scene is thriving, and it’s diverse with it, exemplified by this here project. We’ve heard rumours that the duo’s second LP is already complete, so hopefully we won’t have long to wait before another healthy dose of DEDW8 is amongst us.
By Sam Bennett