KwolleM — c2c
KwolleM’s latest record is an ode to Essex. There are a lot of moving parts here: soulful production, bars from two rappers and samples from grime’s yesteryear; the latter playing out halfway between an interlude and a guest verse. On the standout track ‘Barking (& Dagenham)’, Joe James pulls you in with his baritone delivery and requisite ability to finesse the beat, but what keeps you coming back are the stories of love, life and the occasional bit of dark humour laced in the lyrics. It’s quite a trip to hear Devlin’s guttural flow over the rich sax lines of the beat, but the juxtaposition works and the sample doesn’t feel tacked on. Overall, “c2c” brings together its moving parts cohesively, sounding like the work of someone who loves grime yet is unafraid to mix the genre with different sounds.
P Money — While We Wait EP
“While We Wait” is an EP made to fill the time until P Money’s next project arrives, but there’s no coasting here. ‘Bumbaclart Riddem’ has no time for a hook, a chorus or an interlude, as P and Mez dispatch machine gun flows over a minimal beat, capturing the immediate quality and relentless energy of grime. P Money details his struggles with both his mental and physical health on “Is Somebody There”. It’s a track similar to ‘Priority’ and ‘It’s All Good’, P doesn’t use his standard delivery when delving into personal topics, but the level of intensity remains the same. Final track ‘Pagans Everywhere’ aims at the pretenders, as P stakes his claim as the most consistent in the game. Overall, “While We Wait” is business as usual for P Money, an emcee who continuously puts together quality releases from the subject matter to the instrumentals and the artwork.
Grandmixxer — World
Grandmixxer follows up August’s “Fearless Revolutionary Music” with “World”. Much like ‘Siberia’ and ‘Ancestral Beatdown’, ‘Southbank 2007’ stretches out his ideas over a longer run time — nine minutes, to be precise. The single note stab provides the bite, but the real magic comes from angelic pads and choir samples which rise and fall in the background. ‘Youth In Asia’ switches from weightless melodies to harder sounds, always anchored by tightly composed percussion. The rest of the EP features starship mixes of ‘Dunns Valley To Nile Valley’ and ‘Colliding Squares’, the former sounding weirder than any supposed high brow noise music, making me want to install a sound system in my room to experience those synth blasts at the forty-second mark. Grab “World” for a mind-opening take on grime.
B:Thorough — Angels EP
B:Thorough’s latest EP, “Angels”, is the second release on his new label Textured. The mood here is uber-emotional grime from the same canon as early Dark0 and Last Japan, but B:Thorough avoids sounding derivative through the strength of his melodies and use of vocal samples. The square leads on ‘Together’ are suitably massive; while ‘Being Around You’ chops up an Ariana Grande sample and submerges it in icy melodies. Grab “Angels” to hear the sound of a producer sharpening a signature sound in real-time.
Lemzly Dale — Farewell EP
Lemzly Dale released “Rare Snacks” earlier in the year, which caught my ear through deft sampling and a track that made the sounds of a printer go hard. He’s back this month with “Farewell”, a four-track EP along the same lines as his last, with opening track ‘Zinger’ morphing orchestral sounds into a breezy instrumental grime cut. Elsewhere, ‘Farewell’ is as wistful as the title suggests; while ‘Hope’ closes out the record on a mellow tip. Lemzly’s use of sampling always gives his tracks a vivacious feel, so grab “Farewell” for four spirited grime tunes.
Lewi B — Can’t Wait EP
On the new Lewi B record “Can’t Wait”, familiar samples are re purposed to create fresh sounds. ‘Bliss Keys’ mines the eski sound pack, but the arrangement shows it’s possible to pay homage without falling into pastiche. ‘Korgtopsy’ follows a similar pattern, sounding right for 2020. Stand out track ‘Glow’ sounds mangled in all the best ways, giving off that not of this world feeling that grime does so well. According to Lewi B’s Bandcamp page, his new album is coming soon. In the meantime, turn up “Can’t Wait” to hear one of grime’s best young producers at work.