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2016 Is A Great Year For Grime As Skepta And Kano Dominate MOBO Awards Nominations


Mobo Awards Skepta Kano Laura Mvula Craig David

The recent ascendency of grime to the British mainstream has once again been confirmed with the nominations for the 2016 Mobo Awards, with Kano and recent Mercury Prize winner Skepta both receiving multiple nominations.

Skepta, whose album Konnichiwa scooped the prestigious Mercury Prize last week, edging out records by the heavily-favoured David Bowie and Radiohead, is nominated for three awards, including Best Male, Best Album and Best Grime Act.

SkeptaSkepta following his Mercury Prize victory in September 2016

Continue reading: 2016 Is A Great Year For Grime As Skepta And Kano Dominate MOBO Awards Nominations

Skepta Wins The 2016 Mercury Prize


Skepta David Bowie Radiohead The 1975

Grime star Skepta has edged out competition from red hot favourite David Bowie to win the 2016 Mercury Prize for his album Konnichiwa in London.

The crowd at the Hammersmith Apollo erupted when Skepta’s name was announced as the eventual winner of the prestigious prize by Pulp frontman Jarvis Cocker on Thursday night (September 16th).

The bookies had tipped David Bowie to win posthumously for his final album Blackstar, released just two days before his death in January this year, but the 33 year North London rapper was not very far behind in their estimations either.

Continue reading: Skepta Wins The 2016 Mercury Prize

Mercury Winner Skepta seen on the red carpet at the 2016 Mercury Prize London, United Kingdom - Monday 12th September 2016

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David Bowie, Radiohead And Skepta Included On 2016 Mercury Music Prize Shortlist


Mercury Music Prize David Bowie Radiohead Bat For Lashes Michael Kiwanuka Laura Mvula The 1975 Kano Skepta Jamie Woon

Radiohead, Skepta, The 1975 and the late David Bowie are the big names to have been shortlisted for the 2016 Hyundai Mercury Music Prize, with Adele and previous winner James Blake the notable absences.

The 12-strong shortlist, picked by a panel of music critics, industry figures and artists, was announced on Thursday morning (August 4th) on BBC Radio 6 Music. David Bowie’s 25th and final album Blackstar, released just two days before his death in January this year, is already being touted as one of the favourites to win the overall prize when the winner is announced on September 15th.

Radiohead’s recent album A Moon Shaped Pool makes the Oxford five-piece the most nominated act in Mercury Prize history. Their albums OK Computer, Amnesiac, Hail To the Thief and In Rainbows all made shortlists in previous years, and this doesn’t even count lead singer Thom Yorke’s nomination for his 2006 solo album The Eraser. However, they have not yet won the award.

Continue reading: David Bowie, Radiohead And Skepta Included On 2016 Mercury Music Prize Shortlist

Wild Life Festival 2016 - Live Review


After winning the Best New Festival Award in 2015, Wild Life was back at Brighton City Airport to now showcase and cement its date in the festival calendar as a major player. To do this, it would need to go one better, bring in something neoteric and exhilarating, whilst also landing some grand-musical heavyweights. They arrived in the form of grime's latest stars Stormzy and Skepta, American vets Ice Cube and Busta Rhymes, and pop artists Bastille.

Wild Life Festival 2016 - Live Review

It was the former N.W.A lyricist who had the crowd trembling at his figure tips though. Supported by no more than his son (not O'Shea Jackson who plays his father in Straight Outta Compton), Ice Cube was the penultimate act on Sunday's main stage and stole the show. The set of the weekend, despite co-curators Disclosure and Rudimental headlining the festival for successive years.

With both Stormzy and Skepta having tracks appear ubiquitously over all radio stations, this was their moment to shine, their moment under the spotlight. They appeared on the main stage Saturday and Sunday respectively and both seemed to revere their audience from the first moment, with Stormzy indicating it was the biggest and best crowd he had every performed at - it probably was for Skepta too.

Continue reading: Wild Life Festival 2016 - Live Review

Drake 'Signs' To Skepta's Independent Grime Label Boys Better Know


Drake Skepta Brit Awards

Canadian rapper Drake, one of the biggest names in hip-hop, has surprisingly signed with a tiny independent label in London – according to Instagram at least.

The 29 year old star performed alongside Rihanna to an audience of millions at the televised Brit Awards on Wednesday night, but eschewed the glad-handing and back-slapping of the afterparty at London’s O2 Arena for a tiny venue in the East End, where he performed as a special guest of rap collective Section Boyz.

Fans who turned out at the tiny Village Underground venue to see the South London group were left gobsmacked when Drake, the biggest selling hip hop artist in America for the last half-decade, was brought out as a surprise guest.

Continue reading: Drake 'Signs' To Skepta's Independent Grime Label Boys Better Know

Boy Better Know, BBK , Skepta - Bestival 2015 - Day 4 - Performances and Atmosphere at Robin Hill, Bestival - Isle Of Wight, United Kingdom - Sunday 13th September 2015

Boy Better Know, Bbk and Skepta
Boy Better Know, Bbk and Skepta

Idris Elba Shows Off Rap Skills On Remix Of Skepta's 'Shutdown'


Idris Elba Skepta

Idris Elba’s burgeoning career as a musician continues with aplomb, after the star showcased his rapping skills on a remix of Skepta’s single ‘Shutdown’ on Twitter yesterday.

The ‘Luther’ star uploaded his re-working of the British rapper’s recent single to SoundCloud on Monday and tweeted it to his fans, who immediately jumped in with their approval. “Sometimes you just have to SHUT "dem" DOWN. @Skepta. Do your ting my yout,” he said in the post. In the guest verse he added, Elba makes reference to his roles as Nelson Mandela, Stringer Bell and detective John Luther.

The collaboration is the result of a direct request made to Skepta back in March when the original mix of ‘Shutdown’ appeared back in March, when Elba tweeted “put me on the remix!!!! Cus I SHUT DOWN prime TV on the regular”.

Continue reading: Idris Elba Shows Off Rap Skills On Remix Of Skepta's 'Shutdown'

Skepta - UK premiere of 'Anti-Social' at CineWorld - Arrivals at Cineworld - London, United Kingdom - Tuesday 28th April 2015

Skepta

Tre Mission - Stigmata Album Review


Toronto producer and MC Tre Mission follows up last year's critically acclaimed free mixtape 'Malmaison' with his debut full length LP 'Stigmata'. His blend of R&B, grime and rap comes out of Canada, via the Caribbean, with a distinctly West Coast flavour but has its heart on the East End streets of London. It's been spun and twisted to fit Tre's delivery and style but there's no doubt of the influence and character bestowed on 'Stigmata' by some of the UK's premier grime artists.

Tre Mission - Stigmata Album Review

With 'Stigmata', Tre Mission has taken the East End to the West Coast and blended the gritty reality of street level culture with a bling my crib, pimp my ride sensibility. The fluid and polished production is fuller and less sparse than some harder, edgier, confrontational grime. Mission is smoother, more soulful and, as such to a large degree ('Jack Pot' ft. Skepta excepted), easier listening than some of the UK's more aggressive MCs such a Kano. 

From the off, Tre takes us onto the '416' streets of Toronto, "This is for my ni**az on the strip", telling it as it is, no holds barred, heart on his sleeve, up close and personal. 'Stigmata', the title track itself, drops the bass deep and heavy but blends in some reverse beats, keys and high hats as Tre trades vocals with his partner, both scarred from a relationship in tatters.

Continue reading: Tre Mission - Stigmata Album Review

Reggie Yates, Jessye B and Skepta - Soul II Soul 'Classics' Collection at Harvey Nichols - London, United Kingdom - Thursday 11th April 2013

Reggie Yates, Jessye B and Skepta
Skepta

Skepta and Manchester Apollo - Skepta, Tuesday 13th November 2012 performing at BBC Radio 1Xtra Live 2012 at Manchester Apollo

Skepta and Manchester Apollo
Skepta and Manchester Apollo
Skepta and Manchester Apollo

Skepta, Rescue Me Single Review


Skepta really is a spectacle. Joseph Junior Adenuga, or better known as Skepta in the commercial scene, has already had tremendous success this year. Having released his 3rd Album Doin' it again, he finally caught the attention of the public after many years MC'ing for various producers. With his recent single Bad Boy being his first Top 40 hit, it looks like 2011 may be the year for the emerging Skepta.

Continue reading: Skepta, Rescue Me Single Review

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