Friday 28 April 2023

Single Review: 1984 by Cigarettes and Scratchcards




Cigarettes and Scratchcards


1984 is the first release from the up coming second album from Manchester artist Cigarettes and Scratchcards. This is the first he has featured on Infinite Sounds and as such you might not be familiar with his work. So, here is a bit about him courtesy of this short Bio…

The self-described “anti-artist” is something of a non-conformist when it comes to the current music climate. His sound consists of social observations and dystopian dialect.


Of course, understanding that Cigarettes and Scratchcards Grew up in a working class estate in Wigan, a place once home to the infamous George Orwell - it becomes apparent that the sound we hear today is concomitant with Scratchcards upbringing.

Whilst Scratchcards is largely known for his compelling production, best observed through 2022’s “Scorched Earth Tapes”; he is also known to be one of the most gifted rappers and audio engineers in the UK, and beyond. From the pen to the press - he does it all.

In addition to his own music, Scratchcards has respectable collaboration credits, having produced for the likes of; Grim Sickers, Tremz, and Local - to name but a few. On an engineering basis, Scratchcards is responsible for various works with established acts, including; Window Kid, and Sox, as well as many of Manchester’s emerging talents.

For 2023, we can expect a steady work rate from Cigarettes and Scratchcards,

with his second album “Post-Apocalypse” due in the coming months, as well as various international collaborations.

With all that in mind might we expect 1984 to be something a little different? Well, the easiest way to find that out is for me to get into it…

Described by one of his most personal works to date, 1984 begins with drums closely followed by this heavy bass sound and a mix of synth sounds which creates this dark inner-city vibe that has you picturing damp, dark alleyways that are strewn with rubbish. Cigarettes and Scratchcards then provides what is more akin to a spoken word narrative which, initially, focuses on his life across a couple of tough days where he shows life in all its stark, dark reality. He then expands to a greater view of what life is like in the ever-encroaching digital age, a place where books are seen as little more than firewood by many who would rather bow to the rise of the matrix.

As you listen to what Cigarettes and Scratchcards has to say on 1984, you can feel that deep personal aspect as he describes how depressing life really is for those who are stuck in the day-to-day struggle to survive and find a silver lining where little seems to shine beyond the grey clouds and the shadow of ‘Big Brothers’ ever watchful gaze.

1984 is more than just a look at how modern-day life reflects the vision of writers such as George Orwell and those dark dystopian futures that he foretold, no this is a look at how life is for a majority of people in the UK, especially those in the deprived inner-city areas. This is not a vision of a dark dystopian future born of the mind of visionary novelist, this is the stark, gritty reality of everyday life laid bare for all to see, especially those who chose not to see just how much the populace has become the pawns in the game of the rich and entitled. In fact, you could even say that the powers that be might view us as the shit on their shoes, which they would eradicate tomorrow if they could.

This is not one for the sunny days but, more one for those who chose to think about what is really going on beyond the apparent wonders of the digital world. Cigarettes and Scratchcards shows the impressive and intelligent grasp of wordplay and storytelling that could lead him to be looked on as the George Orwell of the music world perhaps?

1984 is out today, so give this one a listen and ask yourself just how much you own life mirrors that of Cigarettes and Scratchcards.

My thanks to Benson Hedges for sending this one my way and for the bio included in italics.

Time for me to be outta here,

See Ya.



Check this for all your Cigarettes and Scratchcard links:






Thursday 27 April 2023

Single Review: Rescue Me Produced by Planky Featuring 2nd Generation Wu


Rescue Me


Planky ft 2nd Generation Wu


Rescue Me is the new single from beat maker and producer Planky, which features 2nd Generation Wu who first burst onto the scene back in 2019. But, before I get into the review of this track, let me give you a little background on Planky who features here for the first time.

Planky hails from Hampshire on the south coast of England, also the county I was born and grew up in as I hail from Southampton. His musical roots are in the UK Garage scene back in 2002. He was originally part of The Looney Toon Kru (L.T.K) who supported acts like The Dreem Team, Pied Piper & The Masters of Ceremony and DJ Luck & MC Neat. He explored many genres of music but, found that it was Hip Hop that became his true passion. His influences range from The Wu-Tang Clan and Jurassic 5 to J-Dilla, Jazzy Jeff and DJ Premier and he has kept an open mind with his production, experimenting with influences from other genres such as blues, soul, Motown and more heavy rock influences that include Rage Against the Machine, Limp Bizkit and Metallica.

In 2009 Planky joined forces with a DnB Producer, Zen, and over the the next couple of years they released several tracks including Your Shout (2009 Grid Recordings) and Show Me The Love (2010 Flip Audio). After this he focused on getting his own studio of the ground, advancing his scratching skills, playing the guitar and returning to his drum kit. Retuning to the drums led to a number of new career opportunities and collaborations, most notable of which was the 2020 boom bap single Today’s Life, which featured Chester P, Micall Parknsun and Carasel. More recently was Soul Plane which saw him working with Harry Shotta, PAV4N and Dynamite MC, another track will follow this called Adrenaline Rider, later this year.  2023 looks set to be a busy year for Planky with tracks alongside iNTeLL and Pxwer, the sons of U-God and Method Man respectively, already done as well as a partnership with Akil the MC of Jurassic 5. Much of this new music will be released via his own label, Rekkit Records, which he hopes will continue to provide a platform for his own releases.

There is a lot to take in there and proof that Planky has a wealth of experience that is likely to see a very bright future for the South Coast DJ / Producer.

So, without further ado, lets get into Rescue Me…

Rescue Me features live instrumentation, always a plus in my book as it adds more depth, from Louis Sellers (Drums) and Dean Gladwyn (Bass) with Planky mixing in horns and vocal samples to give you this funky soulful vibe, with a raw edge, that immediately raises the adrenaline levels all the way. The 2nd Generation Wu drop these powerful verses with inventive and intellectual word play that demonstrates they more than have the ability to continue the Wu legacy in the coming years.

This is one of those tracks that will no doubt be a staple in clubs, in your headphones and booming out the speakers in your car. Rescue Me is a banger of a track that shows that the Wu mantle now stretches from the US to the UK, with Planky’s production more that worthy of being stood alongside those classic Wu singles. It just has everything you might want from a solid Hip Hop boom bap single. You might want to listen and bounce to sound or, you might want to listen a bit more intently to vocals, picking apart the lines, similes, and metaphors but, however you want to listen, this is one to enjoy and to feel the energy.

Rescue Me is released through Rekkit Records today and is one track you should not sleep on right now.

My humble thanks to Planky for asking to review the track and for sending me the info that I included in the intro, it might be a bit lengthy but, it needed to be said.

On that note,

I’m out, See Ya…



 All the streaming links for Rescue Me:


Rescue Me


Friday 21 April 2023

Beat-Tape Review: Golden Ape Beat-Tape by Live From The Groove


Golden Ape Beat-Tape


Live From The Groove


The Golden Ape Beat-Tape is the latest release from one of the UKs newest Hip Hop labels. Originally started back in hazy days of 2020, Live From The Groove was an online platform dedicated to radio shows and online performances during those painful lockdown pandemic days. Things grew quickly for the guys who decided to start a label alongside the online shows, and they released their first single this year the dope and very funky 23 ‘til Infinity by Dweller and featuring Nilla (Canada).

Dweller aka Al English is no stranger to Infinite Sounds as I reviewed his album ‘Record Of Achievement’ back in January of 2020. Firstly, let me introduce you to the guys who form Live From The Groove: Dweller aka Al English from Manchester is an emcee/producer, Dave Taylor aka TMB from Worthing handles art plus behind the scenes stuff and Simon Canon aka DJ Simon C also from Worthing is the turntable trickster. They are also part of a DJ collective known as the Get It Together DJ’s alongside fellow  DJ Trick.

What the guys have done with Live From The Groove, is to create a label that does everything or as much as possible in house. So, all the recording, mixing, and mastering, the artwork and design, even down to the shrink wrapping, is done internally. Something that really goes back to the independent record label mentality and very Hip Hop in one sense too.

Back to the Golden Ape  Beat Tape which is a hand selected line-up of producers that Al English has had the pleasure of working with over the years. Side A has been compiled and arranged by himself while the B-Side has been mixed by the legendary DJ Jazz T (Jehst, Fliptrix, Ramson Badbones DJ)  of Boot Records. It promises to have a slightly different feel to each side and Dweller promises me that the A-Side will be a bit more on the chilled side But, the B-Side will have a more upbeat vibe with Jazz T doing all the mixing live on the turntables.

With all that said, there is only one more thing to do and that is for me to take you through the album. So, let’s go…

The Golden Ape Intro has the of walking  down the street and passing a venue when you hear the sound of a DJ cutting up some Hip Hop inside and your instantly draw to head in and see what’s going on. The first track to grab your attention is Speedboat by Gadget & GrandHuit, this is mellow sound created out of guitar, sparse drums, and a mixture of organ vibes that you just kinda want to sit back and nod your head to. Next up is Decadent by Kuartz, which has that lo-fi vibe of keys, drums and assorted background sounds that is really mellow but, has an uplifting feeling too. Backseat Drivin’ by D_Piff sees the drums take a backseat to this melodic sound which almost takes the feeling of being the open air that puts this kind of industrial vibe on it but, it’s still mellow and still laid-back. The sound then lightens up with the piano in Working by Conbel Evrence, which softens the drum element almost to the point it is barely audible, creating this fresh sounding vibe that puts you in mind of standing on the seashore on a bright early summer morning and that feeling continues with the sound of gulls, soft drums and organ notes on Apterlude, another track from Conbel Evrence that keeps you drinking in that feeling of a fresh sea breeze blowing away the cobwebs. No compilation of this nature would be complete without at least one beat from the man himself and here Dweller gives us On The Grass, complete with the uplifting sound of guitars, flute and drums which have you floating of into the wide blue yonder feeling as free as the birds.

From floating in the sky, we glide gently back to earth with the sound of Last Man Standing by Chilla Ninja, the soft sounds, drums and cuts, really makes you feel you’re standing on a street, bathed in light of a setting sun and listening to the music  floating to into your awareness from all around you. Those sounds begin to merge into one sound, electronic vibes and acoustic guitar that is Three Paths by Mazzini.  Via a vocal sample we are presented with the notion of three paths to one God, which in this moment feels like  three paths to one sound, that sound is the music  that uplifts us and takes us wherever we want to go, perhaps music is our god?

With that thought in mind, piano notes draw us into Take A Cyde by Chills Myth. Drums drop in alongside the piano notes and once more we find ourselves being overtaken by the music which expands our consciousness to new levels as we allow it to do so, simply by the art of listening. The final track of Side-A is Runny Colours by Orange Feel, The perfect way to end this side as the sounds of harps, soft drums and vocals have you feeling like you just awoke from a meditative music dream and the sights and sounds of the world are just beginning to become a part of your awareness once more.

With our awareness now squarely back in the room, we flip the tape over to side B, both wondering and preparing ourselves for what’s to come, already knowing that DJ Jazz T is about to be live in the mix. Welcome To Side B finds Jazz T cutting up some chillers, tweaking those adrenaline levels a bit and creating anticipation for what’s coming. First track to get the full-on treatment is No Perps by Chills Myth, a synth heavy sound with various drums and cymbal sounds that begin to elevate those upbeat, head-nod vibes. Full Court by Lone Apostrophe almost takes us back into that Lo-Fi vibe with its chilled horns But, the drums elevate this one alongside the initial cuts from Jazz T.

The piano notes and orchestral vibes of Lost Potential elevate the upbeat vibe  once more as Jazz T raises things up just a few notches before raising it up again with the heavy piano vibes of Who I Hang With by Chills Myth. This one has some nice drums and bells too that give this a sweet Hip Hop undertone but the piano notes take the forefront, making this one perfect for a summers drive. The drums and multi-layered sound of Big Slacker (WYCypher Theme) by ExP, has this upbeat electronic jazz vibe that just continues that summer drive chill-out cruise. From there we break into a more  traditional Hip Hop sounding drum vibe of Downrock (Breaktime Pt 3) by Gadget, which has some almost far eastern elements to the sound while also being one of those tracks that maintains a certain b-boy element to it as well, especially when you add in some cuts from Jazz T.

Woah by Conbel Evrence brings a drum and synth infused sound that seems to continuously get you ready for something  but also keeps you waiting….. and what you are waiting for is an Interlude that is this upbeat xylophone heavy sound over some vocal samples, it kind of raises you up into the stratosphere once more. The interlude takes us into the penultimate track On My Knees by V, which has this solid Hip Hop sound with piano notes and drums with some guitar notes and vocal samples which really elevate the upbeat vibes getting those heads nodding. An explosion of sound and some deft cuts catapult us into the final track Spirit Levels by Dusty Methods, which has drums, guitar sounds and much more that give this one an almost nerve-jangling sound with a jazzy vibe.


This is definitely a Beat-Tape of two halves and all the tracks are seamlessly mixed into each other. Creating this Lo-Fi Hip Hop sound that you can float, nod, bounce, or simply just kick back and chill to.

Let’s take the A-Side with its eleven tracks of goodness that says ‘you don’t have to have more bounce to the ounce’ to be Hip Hop, you can also be chill and still be Hip Hop.

It also shows how Hip Hop vibes have influenced and given rise to such genres as Lo-Fi, Trip Hop and Chill Hop. Here Dweller has chosen nine tracks by ten producers, plus one from his own repertoire (two if you count the Intro) to show the calibre of those who produce a more chilled out form of Hip Hop. All mixed in a way that creates this beautiful, relaxed flow that allows you to kick back, close your eyes and let the music take you wherever you want to go.

Now, the B-Side also has that Lo-Fi, lazy summer days kinda feel to the music but, here DJ Jazz T adds his own stamp to proceedings by seamlessly cutting and mixing the entire twelve tracks all in one live session. That addition of cuts, scratches and mixing adds an extra dimension that does the job of raising vibe enough as to give you the perfect soundtrack to a warm summer’s afternoon drive to nowhere in particular, except into the heart and soul of the music.

I have always loved instrumental music such as this because you can listen to it over and over again and it always takes you somewhere different and the Golden Ape Beat-Tape does just that. I have listened to this a few times but sitting and being more focused on the tracks for the review had it sounding entirely different to when I first heard it. That first listen had a certain anticipation attached to it as I was literally the first person outside of the label to hear it, which meant I was hearing something fresh and new, and I’m still amazed how I remember something totally different to what I heard today. That is the power of good music.

There is nothing for it but, for you to give this one a go and I’m pretty sure you won’t be disappointed. The Golden Ape Beat-Tape will have a strictly limited run of good old fashioned cassette tapes for all of you who love that retro feel. There will also be some limited CDs too and remember all those tapes and CDs are done in house with one of a kind artwork. I mean, what more do you want? Seriously.

The Golden Ape Beat-Tape shows exactly what independent labels are capable of, in their desire to bring you the best music and best in limited physical releases. Live From The Groove have produced something that is a little different perhaps,  but still has it roots in the foundation of Hip Hop music.

Pre-release orders will be up on Bandcamp and streaming on 28th April with the full release exclusive to Bandcamp on 15th May. Full streaming release will follow.

My huge thanks to Dweller for asking me to review this one.

One that note,

I’ll see ya next time.



Live From The Groove Bandcamp for the April 28th Pre-Release and much more:

Live From The Groove on Mixcloud:

Live From The Groove YouTube Channel:

Live From The Groove on Instagram:

Live From The Groove on Facebook:



Friday 14 April 2023

Album Review: Future Crates 2 by Chess Moves


Future Crates 2


Chess Moves


A couple of months ago I treated you to my take on Chess Moves beat tape, Future Crates 1, a 29-track monster that mixed up the vibes and gave you one hell of a look at the creative mind of the London based producer. Well, now he is back with Future Crates 2 and this is even more of a monster than the first with massive 36 tracks but, this one will be a little easier on the fingers as 13 of those are interludes.

I’ll let the man himself tell you what it’s about “A crates, vinyl sampling excursion of drum breaks excavated from deep in the basement through the dust and cobwebs and hauled into the studio for a re-awakening. Polyrhythm time structures in the beat assembly process and use of LFO's and filters combined, bring forward moving dynamics to give the tracks motion. Others hit hard like a heavy boom bap sound reminiscent of the 90's Hip Hop Production sound through grain, saturation, and compression. 36 tracks of Hip Hop / Crate Digging Instrumentalism goodness for those in the game that are firmly embedded in the culture and art as well as those that are getting introduced to it with fresh eyes and ears.”

With that in mind, let’s get into it…

It all kicks off with the Intro (Interlude 1) with is a few seconds of heavy drums and cut up samples to whet your appetite before things really heat up with The Calling, this one is a heavy pulse pounding sound with a background electronic element that just eases the impact a little but, not enough to stop you needing to catch ya breath. Interlude 2 hits some classic drum samples that sound straight out the SP1200 with Trouble Funks ‘Pump Me Up’ cut up over the top for good measure before it’s straight into Fundamental Techniques, more heavy boom bap drums with guitar and electronic samples mixed together to give you the fundamentals of putting a beat together. Interlude 3 takes that cut up Pump Me Up section from the previous Interlude but, adds a different drum program to it, just to mix things up.

Independent Part Movement has heavy drums and guitars that has this reverb effect placed on it, this means this one hits with less intensity, which is in complete contrast to the following beat, Overlapping Parallelism, with its mix of rough bass sound and button pushing goodness, this one messes with your head while still making bob your head. It has more of an action soundtrack vibe to it. Multipart Phenomena is just that with multiple elements of drums, percussion, keys, drums and sampled vocal bits, all mixed into one multi-layered vibe. Distinctive Elements is, again, aptly named as there is this distinctive sound to each element. There is one drum beat over which are several orchestral / soundtracks samples that produce this almost eerie sense of anticipation.

Interlude 4 is another host of cut-up samples with a sampled drum loop, just giving a little boom bap pallet cleanser between beats. Heterophony almost seems to overload your awareness until you understand what it is, the definition of this type of musical texture as a simultaneous variation on a single melodic line. Now you can soak up the drums and electronic vibes safe in the knowledge you now understand what it’s all about. Next up is Of The Chamber, a jazzy mix of drum elements and piano notes with a few strings just to add to the depth and which leaves you wondering should you nod or sway to this one and the reverb here gives you feeling it was recorded in one, a chamber that is…

Interlude 5 takes us back to the SP1200 vibe with cut-up samples, taking you back, back into time. From the old skool, we are dragged back to the present with Prodigious Harmonics, which seems to open up the mind to new styles of boom bap music with this extensive display of Hip Hop harmonics to tease both your ears and your mind. Blurred Monody gives us a classic boom bap drum beat over which is these orchestral samples that have this emotional depth, a single melodic line, which is blurred by the head nod sound that carries you along. Interlude 6, once more, takes us back to the classic Hip Hop sound with percussion and cut-up vocal samples.

Homorhythm is a texture of music where all parts have a similar or very similar rhythm. Here there is this mix of drums with an occasional electronic note, all of which do appear to follow a similar rhythm, well they do to my ears anyway but, I’m not as young as I used to be. Superimposition is the art of layering things over the top of each other so that all elements are still evident, and you can hear this here with the drum layers. Structuration is the act of giving structure to something. Here there is a plethora of sounds all brought together in a way as to give structure to this particular beat, giving it an almost futuristic sound. As will the previous Interlude’s, Interlude 7 gives us our classic Hip Hop pallet cleanser of beat and cut-up samples as we move deeper into the second half of the album.

Ostinato Variations is a nerve shredding, electronic and drum sound which shows the very definition of the Ostinato musical pattern, where a short musical pattern is repeated persistently throughout the piece. Also, ostinato is Italian for stubborn so, it could be said this short repetitive pattern is also stubborn in its repetitiveness. After having your nerves tweaked in that way, you might be in need of Interlude 8, with more of its classic Hip Hop vibes and cut-up dope samples. How you compose your music says a lot about your creativity and, Modes Of Composition shows just that with a very heavy, pounding beat alongside a wealth of multi-layered sounds. The vibe of this one is so heavy it literally vibrates you to the very core of your being. Interlude 9 provides a welcome boom bap Hip Hop, head clearing vibe from that heaviness.

Homophonic is very much an electronic sound fest with a drum beat but, as with other tracks this reflects a specific musical texture which, in this case, is based on Homophonic or chordal music where the chords move together at the same speed. Interlude 10 now provides us with another brief reminder of the foundation of the music this album is built on. Contrapuntal Sketch is another track that merges electronic vibes with a heavy bassline. This sounds very much like a mixture of electro and John Carpenter and reflects the contrapuntal musical texture of using two contrasting melodic lines with different rhythm patterns. Heavy pounding drums and horns catapult us into Modal Framework, very much a headbanger vibe there are some orchestral elements that give this one a version on the Hip Hop soundtrack sound. This one reflects the type of music that uses modes in place of the more traditional harmonies.

Interlude 11 takes us back to a more electro vibe for our Hip Hop pallet cleanse and wiping the slate clean prior to listening to how the layers of sound, within a piece of music, interact on Interweaving Patterns. Here we have drums and different electronic sounds all weaved together to create a cohesive track which, once again, has a kind of soundtrack vibe running through it. Interlude 12 hits, for the penultimate interlude, to reset our minds to the classic Hip Hop vibe before Contrasted blasts into our ears with pounding drums and electronic sounds alongside this contrasting, dull repeating sound that acts like a weird siren trying to draw your attention away from heavy sound you want to nod your head to. The drumbeat takes a back seat on Schematics as the synthesizer sound steps to the forefront. This electronic soundscape takes you back to the work of Kraftwerk and the sound that inspired the electro sound of Hip Hop.

Time for one last Hip Hop drumbeat and cut-up samples to get you buzzing on Interlude 13 and then we draw back into The Presence Of Sound with a drum heavy track that sounds almost fractured in its initial sound until you realise that fractured sound is some kind of string instrument, tricking your ears and, for a brief moment, your mind too. With the focus on sound, now our only awareness, the final track Solfeggio treats us to a solid banger of a beat that makes you wanna get up and bounce around or, at the least, nod your head. There is also a more orchestral sound backing this which also holds your attention and reflects the ancient Solfeggio tones that were used from the 8th century up to 1600’s. The original six note scale and the associated frequencies are said to keep the mind, body and spirit in perfect harmony.


Overall, what can I say about this beat tape?

It once again demonstrates the quality and creativeness of Chess Moves as a producer. Across this entire album there are is such a mix of styles and vibes that all originate from what Hip Hop producers and DJ’s did so well in digging in the crates of old long lost vinyl to resurrect those tunes and give them a new lease of life in a new genre of music.

But, more than just showing his expertise as a producer this album also shows how much Chess Moves knows about music itself by creating beats around different musical textures as well as styles and influences. What this does is demonstrate that it pays to know your music in depth so that you can create sampled music that reflects the style and texture of music that has been created for centuries. For instance, Contrapuntal or counterpoint was a musical style used by Johann Sebastian Bach in his compositions. Reflecting these differing musical styles and textures here, on what is far from a classical music album, shows a desire to show how Hip Hop influenced music can be just that and so much more. Chess moves has a knowledge and understanding of creating music that far expands on what I have heard done before. Even bringing in the ancient solfeggio tones is amazing, and I could have written a whole page just to explain what that is all about.

Future Crates 2 is not just a journey through beats inspired by Hip Hop music and the art of crate digging. Future Crates is a deep exploration of the association Hip Hop music has with the very roots of music itself. It might actually be future crates for future generations to dig in but, I can never see these crates going dusty anytime soon. There is a far deeper musical aspect to this beat tape than just being music to listen and be inspired by.

The future aspect of the album is also reflected in the artwork by Sentinal One which has this 2000AD, mega city One vibe about it.

This is one to listen to and make your own mind up about but, I have to say that I have learnt a lot about music in the research for this review which has opened my mind up somewhat.

Future Crates 2 is out on Bandcamp now and everywhere else on 14th April.

My humble thanks to Chess Moves for sending this one over to me.


And on that 432hz note,

I’m out,



The only link you need for Future Crates 2 and Chess Moves:




Single Review: God's Poet / Just A Page by Kelz


God’s Poet / Just A Page




It’s been a while since I last reviewed a B-Line Recordings release But, whenever I do, I’m always struck by the quality of what they release. It’s always a total package with artwork, vinyl and quality music and the latest release on 7” God’s Poet / Just A Page by the mighty Kelz of Bristol’s own 3PM, is no different.

Released on B-Line Recordings in association with Hip Hop Be Bop, the vinyl boast’s quality artwork from the one and only John Dyer (Digital Dyer) with both tracks produced by the legendary SIR Beans OBE (Transcript Carriers, Parlour Talk etc).

Let’s be honest here, when you look at what little I’ve already mentioned here, it ramps up the anticipation levels to max. So, let’s just dive in…


Banging drums, bass and piano notes immediately draw you into God’s Poet and you know that the anticipation was well founded as your head get’s to nodding. Kelz, meanwhile, drops three verses that detail the story of God’s Poet and his experiences on the present-day streets. There is an intellectual and spiritual depth to his words as he paints pictures in your head of the struggles faced by this person, these are the kind of experiences faced by so many black people, especially those who choose to speak out. Here the God’s Poet is not one simply telling people what to do, where to go or who to follow, he is a guiding light that is more telling people to be themselves and know they can be all they can be. In a world of candles this poet is the taper that helps each one to shine.

There is an etheric quality that is almost hypnotic before the bass drops followed by the beat, which is interlaced with flute notes that retains that etheric quality at moments. That flute is almost like the Pied Pipers flute, and you can’t help but, nod your head and follow Just A Page. This track is a stunning tribute to the late Bristol rapper Sir Plus. Sir Plus was one of most respected rappers to come out of Bristol in recent years and who sadly passed away in 2020. When you lose a close friend, remembering the good times is one of the best things you can do to keep their memory alive and that is exactly what Kelz does here, to remember his friend and all those good times. There is not much more I can say here because Kelz words say it all, R.I.P. Sir Plus, A Legend Out Here…


How do you sum up something like this? Here you have two Bristolian legends doing what they do and showing why they are so highly thought of. Dropping the kind of release that is the definition of the phrase ‘Mic Drop Moment’…

Firstly, you have Sir Beans OBE crafting the kind of funky Hip Hop that he does so well and that has that infectious quality to it but, more than that there is a deep vibe to each track here that draws you in and helps you focus on Kelz words. Here those words span two tracks with differing flows and vibes. God’s Poet has this dark edge to it that reflects perfectly how someone can be treated, as all they seek to do uplift and inspire those around them. Just A Page has this emotional focus on the memory of a good friend but, far from having any sadness, Kelz world bring and shine a light on a life well lived and a beautiful legacy that uplifts you as you listen.

There is little more you can say about this release except you simply can’t sleep on this one. The Limited-Edition Vinyl won’t be around long so, jump on this one quick.

My humble thanks to Hip Hop Be Bop’s Shaun Dowling for sending this one my way.

On that note,

I’m Out,



Get the vinyl directly from HHBB Here:

HHBB Home Page Here:

Friday 7 April 2023

Album Review: Blade Dance by Remi Rorschach

Blade Dance


Remi Rorschach


Back in September of 2022 I reviewed the Breaking and Entering by Remi Rorschach, which was released on the Good Darts label. Now, Remi is back on Good Darts with his follow up release, Blade Dance.

As with his previous release, Blade Dance promises to be a mix of styles across ten hard hitting tracks. Once again Remi is joined by Slippalong Chervascus who provides cuts on the album and there are also live instrumentation courtesy of Nick Davis (Bass), Oli Genn-Bash (Sax) and Mike Brewin (Electric Guitar). There are appearances from PG Tips, Lizard Flex, Skwidzilla and Dashwung Slugger, while Remi not only performs his raps but, as with Breaking and Entering, writes, produces and engineers the project.

So, without further ado, join me on my journey through Blade Dance…

It all kicks of with the cuts, heavy electronic bass and a pounding boombap drum sound of Avin A Bubble, this one is a pure assault on the senses in everyway possible. That heavy sound even seems to over the vocals at points with Slippalong’s deadly cuts slicing into your mind, all this as Remi pulls no punches and unloads by mixing up the styles and flows which display a razor-sharp wordplay and a warning to anyone stepping up they must be having a laugh cos ya gonna be left under piles of rubble. Bass and drums are the foundation of the sound on Buzziness with and electronic vibe that almost stings your fragile nerves. There is still a Hip Hop vibe to this one as Remi opens up with a reality-based look at what life is about, a reality check if you will. There is silver lining here is simply looking at you gotta do what you gotta do, end of.

Here Be Dragons brings a more Drill/Trap edge to this but, the drums, guitars and orchestral notes have a more laid-back edge to it. The deeper edge here are the dragons, these seem to be the things we struggle with, addictions that grip us and change who we are, it’s even the violence and pain that is all around that gets the better of us. All the while the system seeks to keep us all down, never really tackling the problems but, allowing them to take control. Hash Tags features Oli The Saxmachine and PG Tips and has drums, cuts, sax and electric guitar that gives this one a reflective deep edge to it. As you listen to the stories here you wonder if this a reflection of inner-city life or more of a look into experiences of Remi himself, perhaps it’s both. The track ends with an extended guitar solo from PG Tips that elevates this one. Life is not easy thing when your written off and given no support to lift yourself up. Red Fountain has that Drill/Trap sound with an essence of Tarrantino and Samurai movies thrown in as Remi goes in as sharp as a katana on this one. It’s all about a verbal reflection of those crazy movies there every cut of the blade is met with the accompanying fountain of red mist as blood erupts from the victim.

It's back to the Hip Hop vibe with Cash Mountain but, there is a faint grime element mixed in too. Here Remi is almost reflecting the likes of Tony Montana as he details that it’s all about the money. Making the mountains of cash and using it lift you up to dizzying heights, while everyone around you wonders exactly how you’re doing it but, how you’re doing it is not important, it’s all about the fact you have it and what you can do with it. Sirens herald a return to the drill vibe with a heavy piano sound on Boss Level. Mario and computer game vibes permeate this one as Remi explains that it all about levelling up to the boss, being the best you can be. There is also that element of frustration where you keep aiming high but, can’t quite get there and anger, even rage creeps in and you almost forget it’s just a game because, all you wanna do is play to win. Back to the pounding boom bap drums, guitar, cuts and etheric vocal samples on OPS, which has a head nod vibe on what is that posse cut vibe. Remi, Lizard Flex, Skwidzilla and Dashwung Slugger drop verse after verse of slick wordplay that is unrelenting and has one aim, which is to get you bouncing, so enjoy this one.

The penultimate track is Vulneratus Non Victus, this is a Latin phrase, which translated into English means Wounded but not conquered. Featuring PG Tips the guitars, keys and drums give this one an upbeat head nod sound. The vibe from this one really seems to say that going into anything you are not going to come out unscathed, you won’t win every battle along the way, and that’s what it’s all about is walking forward no mater what. The album rounds off with Start A Cult, drums keys, and electric guitar give this a rock rap sound, even with that faint trap sound in the background. With skillful wordplay and turns of flow, Remi seems to be saying here that its not about creating something that gives you a kind of cult following, it’s all about being individual and doing your thing and being authentic and giving the people what they want.


So, first off, the thing that strikes you initially is that Blade Dance is very much a hardcore style album. Remi has crafted this unflinching and unrelenting release that pulls no punches when it comes to looking at life from the view of todays youth on the streets. It is a far more Hip Hop influenced release than Breaking and Entering but, still has enough variety of styles to appeal to wide audience.

The more you listen to this, there is a sense that there is a deeper meaning behind the album. I know that everyone has their own life experience that colours how they interpret things but, as much as this album speaks on life and a view of that life from a particular viewpoint, it also speaks on the self and you view and react to what happens around you. There is a lot of anger and upset in the world at the moment and when you are viewing the world through a lens of the troubled self then you will see things different to most and sometimes the anger and a desire to let go of it, is understandable just as in a way as if you were hitting a punchbag at the gym, except you do it through music. That was just a personal viewpoint…

Back to the album.

The album has a very well-crafted sound that gives a polished foundation for the raw, gritty and unflinching vocal style Remi brings and it works very well. But, one thing I really liked about the album is that Remi uses a lot of live instruments to give the album more of a musical edge and for me those live instruments just elevate the sound somewhat. The musicians all did a cracking job here so much respect to them. There is also that one posse style cut which is one of those tracks that is really for the listeners, and everyone does a superb job on this, showing their skills and keeping the adrenaline levels up. Remi also keeps you guessing all through the album, which flows very well by the way, there are times you wonder if he is simply venting his anger and other times you get this is all coming from personal experience but, you do wonder which is the basis of the album until you have listened to the entirety of the album and you realise it comes from inside the mind of Remi Rorschach and it all has basis in reality.

Overall, Blade Dance is a solid and hardcore album with dark undertones that reflects the struggles of life in the inner-city environment where it seems hard to rise out of those tough spaces. Where anger, pain and addiction colours the walls everywhere you look. Through music the album gives you a look at that world and how one man stood up to show that world and his journey through it to where he is now.

Blade Dance is out now on the Good Darts label with digital and CD formats available.

On That note,

I’m out, see ya.



Get the album on CD from Good Darts Here:

Remi Rorschach Website:

Stream on Spotify Here:


Blade Dance - Jabbathakut promo mix

Red Fountain


You can find more videos from Blade Dance at Remi's YouTube channel: