On Thursday 23rd October, we are launching the first ever #LATIMERLIVE, showcasing some of the best established and up-and-coming artists in the UK Rap scene.The event will also be streamed live online from Shapes in Hackney Wick by digital entrepreneur Rashid Kasirye’s LinkUp TV, (one of the greatest digital innovators of the scene) the event will be featuring some of the biggest names in UK Rap such as Stormzy, Fekky and Scorcher. Stromzy has had a buzz for the last 3 years or so but has really given himself notoriety in the past year with songs such as ‘not that deep’ and his 3 part ‘wickedskengman’ freestyles that have very effectively combined contemporary content with the nostalgia of Grime. Many of us will remember the Grime days when everyone had instrumentals blaring out of their Sony Ericssons, but for the younger generation who have grown up on a diet of mainly Rap (since Giggs made everyone feel they needed to take the tempo down a notch) it’s an exciting rejuvenation of the UK Grime scene.
Of course Grime has still been present, with heavyweight veterans keeping it alive and even newer young artists particularly in the North, such as the Invasion Alert movement from Birmingham, but it has still become a niche (whereas it was once THE genre of the UK underground). For Grime to really be given relevance again it needed a big young artist in London Rap to breathe life back into it, and Stormzy has done exactly that. It could even be said that ‘wickedskengman’s’ success has influenced other big names to have fun with Grime again such as Youngs Teflon’s ‘Grime is dead’ series (reminiscent of his Y.O days as a Grime artist). He has also recently paid tribute the one of the most infamous Ruff Sqwad instrumentals ‘Be together’ further demonstrating his versatility as an artist.The same can be said about Fekky, a massive name in the UK rap scene known for his originality and charisma as well as just getting people so excited that they want to slap their friends. Although Fekky has only made real attempts in the music scene in the last 3 years and usually only features on rap tempo beats, he is definitely no stranger to grime. His recent song ‘Still Sittin’ Here’ with Dizzee Rascal (reminiscent of Dizzee’s song from ‘03 ‘Sittin here’) was a great treat for Grime fans and created a huge buzz only topped by the remix featuring an arsenal of some of the biggest names in Grime.
Even when not on Grime beats, these artists still keep it refreshingly British with their style. In a time when Chicago Rap has been the major influence for a large number of recent London artists, it’s good to see a handful of other artists keeping in touch with their UK identity and resisting the temptation to rap on a Drill beat (principally associated with the Chicago rap scene). Even if these artists don’t bring Grime back into the limelight in the long term, it’s still a nice feeling to be reminded of the originality that we possess in the UK.By Matty Stretchit