Artist 06: Illinformed
Track Name: War Drum
No. of Guests: 6
Guest Artists: Eric The Red, Index, Jack Jetson, Leaf Dog, OAB, Smellington Piff.
Prolific producer Illinformed has had no shortage of talent gracing his tracks in the last few years. Taken from the excellent album The Mould Tape which is literally exploding with features, War Drum boasts the most artists on a tune on the LP including long term Illinformed collaborators and brothers Eric The Red and… Leaf Dog again. It would have actually been completely impossible to compose this 10 song selection without him popping up at least a couple more times beyond the intro. The guy seems to be all over getting into every crowded track possible.
Artist 07: The Bluntskins
Track Name: Beer Money Funk Remix
No. of Guests: 12
Guest Artists: Martin Connor, Black Josh, Sleazy F Baby, MC Jon, DJ Cutterz, Jam Box, Goshin, Sparkz, Dubbul O, Ellis Meade, Blind MIC, Afro Sam.
This track says it all on how much of a formidable force the North is becoming in the UK scene. Manchester based act The Bluntskins, consisting of MCs Bill Sykes and Cheech with Producer Pro P have crewed up something fierce for this one. Plenty of rappers worth watching in this with a bit of beatbox thrown in from Jam Box and some hookage plus smoothly harmonized vocal backing from singer Martin Connor. The beats funky as fuck, flows are all on point and the moodily lit but amusingly raucous video tops it off.
Artist 08: Erm… I guess Tinchy Stryder?
Track Name: Game Over – Female Takeover
No. of Guests: 9
Guest Artists: Ruff Diamondz, Amplify Dot, Envy, CherriV, BabyBlue, RoxXxan, Lioness, Mz Bratt & Lady Leshurr.
So yes, admittedly this probably seems like the odd one out in the line-up. Without getting caught up with obvious questions like if it’s even hip-hop (maybe not) or whether some of the singy bits shat on it a bit (probably yes), I’m just going to get on with justifying the selection. The main thing that’s sick about this is what it responded to. Tinchy Stryder had just rounded up 2010’s whole A-list of talentless sellouts to pile on to a harder, more credible beat than any of them had been on for years so that they could circle jerk while playing rappers and push the image that despite the utter musical codshit they’d all subjected the British Public to recently that they were all still real. Fail. Or Win if you go by its 13 million views. (Apologies to Giggs for getting tarred with the same brush by association in that rant.) Anyway… all this made it pretty sweet when an all female version came out consisting of relative unknowns and they ABSOLUTELY MURDERED the male original. Stand out bars come from Amplify Dot, RoxXxan and the now massive Lady Leshurr smashing the final bars.
Artist 09: Baby J
Track Name: Midlands Anthem
No. of Guests: 13
Guest Artists: Rukus, Yogi, Wariko, 10 Shot, Precha, Mnt, Malik, 4th Lord, C-mone, J Gold, Tuska Rhymestein, Big V, Macca T.
This head-noddy rowdy skankathon from Baby J squeezes the essence of the most bizarre geography field trip imaginable into a four minute rampage. Nottingham, Wolverhampton, Coventry, Birmingham and Leicester all get shout outs and a bunch of under-represented talent from the Midlands get some shine. As the final track off the feature heavy album Baby Food which boasts collabs from some big names, the 13 strong crew on this banger hold their own fiercely. Mainly, to its credit is just unashamedly fun and a surprisingly bouncy climax to the LP.
Artist 10: Mr Brown
Track Name: Oil Baron
No. of Guests: 12
Guest Artists: Cappo, Jehst, Pneumatic, EMCee Killa, Solar Black, Teslas Ghost, Ray Vendetta, MNSR Frites, Brotherman, Confucius, Kashmere, Life MC.
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Finishing this list off with a serious bang, Mr Brown‘s Oil Baron brings a verbal force to be reckoned with. This beat is savage. Mr Brown’s franticly colliding symphonics mash epic horn motifs together zig-zagging between ominous, frenetic and triumphant over a marching kick and snare. That’s a solid Start as it is. Bring on a dirty dozen of lyricists that have all seemed to see to eye to eye on the vibe they should be bringing then knocked executing it out of the park and suddenly you have a monster. Don’t even know who to shout out here. Congratulating Cappo and Jehst for setting a pace or Kashmere and Life MC for killing it at the end would seem a bit like it was diminishing the contributions of the 8 slightly less well known guys in between who all ensure the murkage is relentless. The whole thing’s nails.
Disagree with anything that’s been said here? Come to our ends and fight us.
Or not. Actually don’t. We’d lose. We are interested to hear of anything we’ve missed though. So get involved in the comments below. Is there a UK posse cut with more features that’s slipped beneath our radar? Do you think that Tinchy Stryder’s Game Over was a genre defining classic? Or are there some diamonds we’ve neglected to mention or didn’t know existed that should have made the cut?