Skepta - Doin' It Again
The self-proclaimed King of Grime, Skepta, has released a third studio album - Doin’ It Again -his first release backed by a major label (All Over The World/Universal Records).
Hailing from North London, Skepta, who originally started out as a DJ is popularly known for his roots in the Grime scene, and his involvement in the label/business venture, Boy Better Know.
Doin’ It Again illustrates a further move towards a more diverse and commercial sound for the artist; it seems the Nigerian native is following in the footsteps of other UK urban acts intent on breaking into the mainstream. Consequently the album single’s ‘Bad Boy’, ‘Rescue Me’, and ‘Cross My Heart’ were all top 40 in the UK charts when released last year.
This has caused some fans to criticise the album and accuse the MC of selling out. Ironically Skepta explores this issue on the album where he cheekily rhymes ‘‘He sold out. I sold out yeah, there weren’t one ticket left, not even a chair. I should send you a postcard, I wish you were here’’.
The album is not completely devoid of Grime tracks, as ‘Do It Like Me’ and ‘Mike Lowery’ – two of my favourite songs on the album help strike a balance with the more pop inspired tunes like ‘Rescue Me’ and ‘So Alive’ which features N-Dubz.
Other features on the album are Chipmunk, Boy Better Know, Diddy Dirty Money, Preeya Kalidas and Charlee Drew, who teams up with Skepta on ‘Taking Too Long’ – another one of my favourites from the album where we see a more sensitive side to the artist.
The 28 year old displays he’s a man of many talents as a majority of Doin’ It Again was self-produced, though production credits are also due to S-X, Agent X and others.
My only qualm with this album is that at times there’s an excessive use of auto-tune particularly on the chorus of ‘Amnesia’. Apart from that I’m very impressed, Skepta displays you can be commercially viable without entirely neglecting your grime origins, and watering down your sound completely.
In fact the tune ‘Doin It Again’ and album title is an ode to his classic grime lyrics, ‘I’m, I’m, I’m doing it again, they tried to stop me but I’m doing it again’ and he affirms his loyalty to the scene in this song – illustrating that yes Skepta doesn’t just solely make grime tunes anymore but he still remembers where he came from.
Doin’ It Again is out now.
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