Skepta linking up with Young Lord (AKA A$AP Bari) here on the Grime-infused throwback Hip-Hop track ‘It Ain’t Safe’. From the relaxed tempo to the new flow and collaborator, it’s obvious that Skepta’s looking across the atlantic for inspiration (maybe even an audience?). However with his recent production and direction work this feels more like a victory lap than jumping ship, casually proving he can dominate in a genre outside his own.
Production wise, the beat sounds like a boom-bap ‘Mike Lowery’, the chilly synth playing off the hard edged lyrics. Young Lord’s feature consists of a two line hook which seems to take up a great deal of the song; Skeppy sticks to 8 bar verses, which definitely go further at 75bpm than they would at 140 but are still pretty zippy. Although frustrating given the quality of his bars, it means his time on the mic gets straight to the point and doesn’t compromise the air of intimidating menace he’s trying to portray. Definitely a slow burning banger, and a very hopeful sign for his upcoming ‘Konichiwa’ album.
Release date: 2.11.14
– Bert Coyle