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4.8.05 Unsafe betz  

I don't even pretend to proffer bleeding-edge, up-to-the-microsecond grime knowledge/trax. But for those who slept on 'em, or have day jobs & a gather-ye-rosebuds worldview with no room for Slsk, & simply prefer to be shepherded to the tried-and-true, well, I'm here to help. Here're a few easy swallows, thought by many to be grime's last hope for puncturing the mainstream. To anyone docking Roll Deep for, God forbid, making catchy songs: zip yr lips & relish the effin' music (q.v. Reynolds on "typical UK undergroundism self-sabotage"). The C19H28O2, the homegrown, hungry, hardscrabble grit hasn't gone anywhere.

// Roll Deep Crew, "When I'm 'Ere"

Sans Dizzee, the 241-member Roll Deep crew gallops out of the gates riding revved-up horror-flick accordions (aka, Danny Weed's "Shank Riddim"), spraying cockneyfied threats in stilted Uzi rhythms, each line capped by the menacing titular condition: Thanatos a Damoclean blade, slung over the track like a thundercloud, Eros curiously AWOL. Here they're churning tribal war cries into bleak urban anthems. And tell me that tuff square-wave low end's not tuff enough. (Tell me, moreover, if I should post the Wiley rmx.) Bonus video, c/o the BBC.

// Kano, "Reload It"

Bulletproof nonchalance, starched-crisp enunciation, hooks--there's a formula to Kano's very-young-Turk crossover charisma. On "Reload It" Kano crumples up this formula & with Diplo's deck wizardry, drags grime forward, meanwhile sacrificing zero cred. We board this wobbly brass rollercoaster of noise, snaking frenziedly through a DnB forest. Our fellow passengers: Kano, solo, unflinching in the front seat, the picture of street sangfroid; Diplo right behind him, telekinetically preventing the car from derailing; Demon & D Double E, backseat, bouncing barbs in a state-of-nature staccato. Fitting that the track fades into squeals of delight.

O & an extra treat:

// Hive, "Krush"

For fans of fine turkish tobacco & dance music, some rhapsodizing (my italics):

From those opening oooh, skycraping synths with orgasmic (in the "touched by a variety of religious experience" sense not the sexual one) male "ohhhh"s to the squealing trumpet spiraling upwards to the Organized Konfusion sample to the grinding mentasm breakdown and deftly (but not overly) chopped roll-out, this is worthy of anything in the Source Direct/Hidden Agenda era, but beefed up on the post-Bad Company workout plan. The drums really slam, but they also shake, rattle, and stop on a dime. And admit it, when those same nape-licking synths come in at the bridge, you love it, none--more-expected-none-more-effective. It's, for whatever it's worth, my fave d&b single of the year so far. I seriously don't think anyone can fuck with the Violence crew right now.

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