Bisk – Gutter City (Review)

Bisk, Reviews

London MC Bisk is one of the most consistent and entertaining writers active right now. He’s been releasing a steady stream of quality projects, and ‘Gutter City’ is the latest in the ever-growing catalogue. Released through Radio Juicy, the eighteen-track album features Stinkin Slumrok, aptly credited on the front cover, featuring on five of the songs on here, alongside a selection of top drawer lyricists. If you’re familiar with Bisk’s work then you know that this is going to be good, if not then strap yourself in and turn up the dial.

‘Guttercitysh!t’ features Stinkin, and the looming, murky beat is comprised of pounding, lo-fi kicks and haunting sound effects. Bisk and Slummy both deliver verses packed with charisma and unorthodox swagger, and this LP is a memorable showcase of their dynamic flavours. ‘Wildcheese’ is a definite standout. The slow-moving cut features intense verses from Jack Danz and Slumrok; the eclectic styles on display are flawlessly balanced, and the production is impeccable too. Bisk’s skill is perhaps best exemplified over gritty, off-kilter production; a perfect example is the brilliant ‘Mynigga’. The track clocks in at under two-minutes, and the prolific, dexterous vocal is executed with an effortlessly mellow delivery.

‘Smoke’ is a track that has been doing the rounds on soundcloud, and from the moment the raw loop kicks in it’s easy to see why. Slumrok, Sniff, Danz and Bisk drop flawless verses laced with witty punchlines, and the melting pot of styles and accents results in a clear-cut highlight. Jack Danz once showcases again his penchant for cutting, hard-hitting quotables here; he spits “Modus operandi. We treat a rock of mandy like some popping candy”. I mean, come on. Bisk recruits Blah veteran Sly Moon for the jazzy ‘Coldsagfunk’. The reverb drenched snare and crisp hi-hats back the two lyricists as they spit with a silky demeanour and smooth flows on this classy track.

The glitchy ‘SwampaZe’ features West Yorkshire duo The NorthaZe, and this is a collaboration that was meant to happen. Bisk, Kosi Tides and Swish move seamlessly over the bouncy instrumental, and the leftfield approach makes this a brilliantly exuberant track that illustrates the wealth of talent on display. ‘Ere’ is a characteristically dark banger, and is a fantastic ending track (not including the outro ‘Uzi’); the sparse drums and screwface-inducing bassline are a winning formula, and Bisk’s menacing delivery is the final piece of the puzzle.

‘Gutter City’ is a cohesive body of work, and Bisk’s unique style is captivating for the duration. Dope collaborations and seamless production are key ingredients, and the standard of writing on display here is tremendously impressive. This isn’t a stroke of luck though; Bisk’s discography is packed to the brim with heavy releases, and if the recent past is anything to go by, there’ll probably be another banging project from Bisk online somewhere before you’ve finished reading this review.

By Sam Bennett

@TheRealPP

@LYTEWORK

http://www.facebook.com/LYTEWORK

http://www.radiojuicy.com/album/gutter-city

Bisk – Don’t Piss It Off (Review)

Bisk, Reviews

There’s no stopping Blah Records this year; the longstanding independent label continues its incredibly productive schedule with the release of ‘Don’t Piss It Off’, an LP from London MC Bisk with production handled by North London beatsmith Formz.

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The LP opens with ‘Slippin’, and the gloomy, slow-moving instrumental backs Bisk’s signature gritty, cocky lyricism and murky flows as he drops hard-hitting punchlines in creative bars laced with vivid imagery and drenched in swagger. ‘Big City’ features veteran Blah MC Lee Scott, and the crisp, jazzy drums and haunting piano lines are perfect for Bisk’s braggodious approach, and Lee’s witty verse is an absolute killer, and finds the Runcorn lyricist spitting quotables such as “lost in me own mind/The Higgs boson was in me pocket the whole time” and the genius closing bar “why? It’s just the letter after X”.

‘Cult De Sag’ is a banging posse cut; the track features Danny Lover, Salar and Sleazy F Baby and the four Blah heads go back to back cramming in short, energetic verses. The track lasts just over two minutes, but the concise format definitely works in it’s favour. Sheffield based MC Sniff appears on the lazy, ultra-chilled ‘Beazy’; Formz’s low-key production and the intoxicating vocals from both rappers make this track a highlight of the ‘Don’t Piss It Off’ LP. Closing out on the subtle piano based ‘Marooned’, the concise, cohesive project is yet another one to add to Blah Records ever-growing discography; the independent label is enjoying one of it’s most consistent and creative periods in it’s decade long history, and Bisk is one of several new additions to the roster that has been killing it for the past year or so.

With one of the most impressive work-rates in the game, Bisk is one to keep tabs on. ‘Don’t Piss It Off’ is the latest in a healthy run of projects for the London MC; with Formz at the helm of the beats, Bisk is free to let loose with his razor sharp pen-game, bringing a unique and distinctive outlook to the table, executed with flair and finesse across the album’s ten tracks (discounting the intro and outro). Something tells me it won’t be too long before we hear from the Blah MC again, but until then ‘Don’t Piss It Off’ is sure to remain in rotation for the foreseeable future.

Sleazy F Baby – All Blahk Tracksuit (Review)

Reviews, Sleazy F Baby, Wordz

Blah Records continue their incredibly impressive streak of releases this year with ‘All Blahk Tracksuit’, the new project from Manchester MC Sleazy F Baby. With a select few in-house features and a unique sonic direction, Sleazy is representing for a new generation of rappers. This takes the traditional hip-hop sound that is so often the standard formula for UK artists, and fuses it with trap-inspired flows and quirky production.

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Opening the LP (after an introduction from Black Josh) is the title-track, and if you weren’t prepared for the rowdy, hard-hitting and unashamedly weird sound showcased across the whole of Sleazy’s debut LP, this track is guaranteed to put you in the right mindset. The simplistic but energetic instrumental backs the Mancunian MC as he drops bars with wit, intensity and a ferocious delivery. The trap influence is clear, with skippy flows and stuttering production, both of which are touches found across the entirety of ‘All Blahk Tracksuit’. ‘From The Bits’ follows, and the more traditional sounding cut is a hard-hitting anthem, with a brilliant accompanying video. The raw attitude Sleazy exhibits with effortless finesse is packed with dope quotables and relentlessly ignorant content; ‘this the might have fucked your baby-mother flow’ being just one small segment. It’s incredibly entertaining and the beat is an absolute banger too.

‘Y.N.I.F’ is dope; the crisp drums, weird samples and in-your-face attitude from Sleazy combine to make it a standout from the ‘All Blahk Tracksuit’ mixtape. The off-kilter double-bass riff and invasive, experimental jazz flips make for one of the most memorable beats on the entire project, and the Manchester MC drops his bars with precision and passion. ‘Sleazy’ is another brutally delivered cut; the aggressive and energetic flows and deliveries sound sick over the bassy, modern production. Any heads who are of the opinion that hip-hop in the UK sticks purely to the traditional, boom-bap ethos needs to check out ‘All Blahk Tracksuit’ for a refreshing and enjoyable perspective.

Fellow Blah MC Stinkin Slumrok joins Sleazy on the wavey ’21’, and Slumrok’s verse is charismatic and outlandish, which has come to be expected from the North London spitter. ‘Rob The Plug’ features upcoming rapper Bisk, and the gritty production is both dusty and synthetic, a combination which appears throughout the project, and it goes a long way to making it cohesive and consistent. ‘Ignorant Shiznit’, featuring Black Josh, is a late highlight, with a gloomy atmosphere executed smoothly over the subtlest instrumental on the entire release.

Wildly entertaining, relentlessly banging and instantly recognisable, Sleazy F Baby has dropped a very impressive debut project. This off-kilter direction fits perfectly with the Blah aesthetic, but he’s certainly carved out his own niche with the ‘All Blahk Tracksuit’ release. The beats are heavy, and the same can be said for the bars, and any hip-hop head is going to thoroughly enjoy this one.

By Sam Bennett

@TheRealPP

@LYTEWORK

@SleazyFBaby

http://www.facebook.com/LYTEWORK

http://www.blahrecords.com

Morriarchi – Buggzville Sessions (Review)

Morriarchi, Reviews

Blah Records continue their insanely productive 2016 with the release of ‘Buggzville Sessions’, the full length LP from longstanding and respected producer Morriarchi, with features from a who’s who of the best in hip-hop from the British Isles, as well as Canadian MC Danny Lover also making an appearance.

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The menacing ‘Hush Ya Beak’, with it’s glitchy drums and screeching samples, is a perfect opener; it serves both as a reminder or as an introduction (depending upon your familiarity with Morri’s work) to his distinctively gloomy, hard-hitting sound. The shrouded-in-mystery MC Rox Slicken appears on this first cut, and he absolutely destroys the unorthodox beat.

‘Campbell & Algar’ is a slow-moving, swegged out banger from two of the UK’s finest lyricists. Jehst and Lee Scott collaborate on what is a long anticipated pairing for rap fans the underground over, and it doesn’t disappoint in the slightest. This is witty, sarcastic hip-hop at it’s genius best; Lee’s savage bar claiming just how much of the pie is his is a standout, and Billy Brimstone’s ‘Why everybody wanna rap hella fast? I’m in the bath with a copy of The Telegraph’ lyric is simply incredible. Only Jehst could make such a simplistic segment of writing sound so poignant.

Welsh Collective Squid Ninjaz are represented by MC’s Hekla and Joe Dirt who appear on ‘Roach Lyfe’. The gritty, grimey and smoked out production, which comes complete with hazy switch-up’s that compliment the lyrics as they hammer through the system, is absolutely fire, and the hard-hitting lyricism is silkily executed. Morri’s remix of Bisk’s tune ‘Pimpfunk’, which was originally produced by Lee Scott and was released on Bisk’s ‘Raw Shit’ EP, is up next. The smooth, cinematic, Tarantino-esque production takes Bisk’s raw, passionate vocal to an entirely different place from the upfront, hard-hitting original version.

Sheffield veterans Trellion and Sniff appear on ‘Buggzville’ and the leftfield, tripped out beat is perfect for both Northern lyricists’ cocky, laidback styles. Trellion’s verse shines, with some characteristic quotables; ‘I’m way iller anyday/but I don’t know shit about shit, who the fuck’s J Dilla anyway’ is just one of many. The Danny Lover solo track ‘Kapcha’ is the highlight of the LP, with the phased, affected bluesy guitar samples perfectly combining with Danny’s lazy flow and infectious delivery.

The album closes out with a Bisk solo track, entitled ‘No Phone Calls’; the simplistic, subtle production backs the Blah MC’s savage tongue as he delivers relentless screwface-inducing bars with a mixture of passionate realness and comedic flourishes.

‘Buggzville Sessions’ is quality through and through; the dark soundscape created takes a few listens to properly comprehend, but the vibe Morriarchi creates is thoroughly original and leaves a lasting impression long after Lee Scott’s adlibs on the final song have faded from the speakers. Blah Records’ talented roster is represented heavily on this release, and with Sleazy F Baby’s solo project due for release very soon they show no sign of slowing down.

By Sam Bennett

@TheRealPP

@LYTEWORK

@Morriarchi

http://www.facebook.com/LYTEWORK

http://blahrecords.com

Black Josh & Pete Cannon – Smoking Kills (Review)

Black Josh, Pete Cannon, Reviews

Blah Records’ latest release is a five track EP from Mancunian MC Black Josh and veteran UK producer Pete Cannon. ‘Smoking Kills’ is a prime cut of the chilled out, soulful hip-hop Black Josh has been successful with thus far; the witty, uptempo lyricism and the nineties inspired production from Pete Cannon is consistently impressive, with smooth sampling and drums that compliment Josh’s flows perfectly.

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The opening track, ‘Everyday’, is a great introduction to the EP. With a subtle, relaxed instrumental backing Black Josh as he drops lyrics about his consistency and skill in the rap game, switching up the flows at a rapid pace; DJ Sammy B-Side also provides cuts on the tune. ‘Ohana’ follows, this track features frequent Black Josh collaborator, Manchester rapper Sleazy F Baby, also known as Wordz. The drums are solid; the simple, understated pattern is perfect for Josh to kick lyrics over, and the crisp sound is a testament to Pete Cannon’s production.

The multisyllabics, punchlines and flows that Josh displays on ‘Saggin’ are first class. This track features Dyslexis, and both MC’s drop verses packed with wit and intricate, effective rhyme schemes. The EP closes with ‘Know About It’, and the smooth brass samples and raw hip-hop drums compliment Josh as, yet again, he demonstrates an insanely tight flow, weaving all over the beat to great effect, as well as delivering a catchy hook.

‘Smoking Kills’ is a really strong project from Black Josh, and if you needed any convincing, it solidifies Pete Cannon’s place as one of the country’s top producers. With smooth, sophisticated, golden era inspired beats and uptempo flows, Blah Records have done it again.

By Sam Bennett

@TheRealPP

@LYTEWORK

@BlackJoshAPE

@PeteCannonBeats

http://www.facebook.com/LYTEWORK

http://www.blahrecords.com/

Lee Scott & Black Josh – B Movie Millionaires (Review)

Black Josh, Lee Scott, Reviews

Blah Records continue their steady output of swegged out, quality hip hop with a 5 track EP courtesy of Lee Scott and Black Josh. This combination of original Blah head and one of the label’s new generation has worked on previous collaborative tracks, and to hear Lee Scott’s unique perspective and wit and Black Josh’s precise, skippy flow and intricate lyricism is a real treat.

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Produced in its entirety by Baileys Brown, ‘B Move Millionaires’ features a section of hauntingly raw hip hop beats for Lee and Josh to spit over. The funky loop of ‘Chicken N Chips’ is a dope way to start the project, with Lee’s original punchlines and references catching the ear like pretty much any verse of his does. King Grubb joins on this opener, and each MC laces the track with memorable verses.  Pronouncing the ‘Blah syndicate clique, the best shit since chicken and chips’, their string of excellent releases seems to prove his point perfectly.

The gloomy, grimy instrumentals of ‘Happy Land’ and ‘Dollface’ take the EP into traditional territory for Blah heads. With weeded out, hedonistic lyricism and punchlines for days, the vibe is consistent and enjoyable; the kind of hip hop Blah Records specialises in is something remarkably different from  what is going on in the rest of the scene, and it’s perfectly exemplified here. ‘Skedaddle’ is another dope menacing cut, and ‘F.H.R.I.T.P.’ is a heavy closer, with King Grubb and Stinkin Slumrok making nice appearances.

‘B Movie Millionaires’ is an EP any hip hop head should check out. Lee Scott’s discography speaks for itself, and he’s still releasing quality music, with a lot in store for the future. His new album on High Focus, entirely produced by Dirty Dike will be an exciting prospect for sure. Black Josh is making a real impact and building buzz at a rapid pace, and it’s easy to see why. Baileys Brown handles the production expertly on this EP, and the lyrics are as on point as ever. This is a quality project from two of the UK’s best MC’s.

By Sam Bennett

@TheRealPP

@LYTEWORK

@TinFoilFronts

@BlackJoshAPE

http://www.facebook.com/LYTEWORK

http://www.blahrecords.com