Manga Saint Hilare x Murkage Dave
We Need To Look After Us
This surprise link-up between two UK underground greats (following on from their ‘Men Are Trash’ collab) sees the pair sparring over gold standard production and tackling topics from mental health and self-care to masculinity as well as the importance of community. Though not a grime record through-and-through in terms of genre, it reflects the broadening of the sound. With beatwork coming from Tre Mission, Jon Phonics, Star Slinger and more, ‘We Need To Look After Us’ is a truly empowering – and important – body of work.
'EFFED (ft. Jason Williamson)'
While this isn’t grime as you’d know it, Snowy has always looked outside the confines of the genre. He’s teamed up with fellow Nottingham lyricist Jason Williamson of Sleaford Mods for a slamming, dirty AF look into the state of the UK as it stands, chatting cuts, the NHS, Windrush and more grievances. Post-election, this is exactly the kind of doom-laden banger we need.
'Heavy Is The Head'
When he’s not having beef with Michael Gove, Stormzy is busy cementing his title of the biggest grime star on the planet right now. ‘Heavy Is The Head’ finds him perfecting his own take on the genre, drafting in nine individual writer-producers to craft something packed with church choirs, Toddla T instrumentals and even an interpolation of the Tracey Beaker theme tune.
'Instrumental World 3'
Wiley’s go-to producer Zdot turns in the third instalment of his ‘Instrumental World’ series, studded with (you guessed it), grime constructs for MCs to ride. Zdot has the knack of producing grime beats that bang with soul-stirring, emotional breakdowns, providing a welcome antidote to all-guns-blazing grime sounds.
No Hats No Hoods
It’s clearly a good time to release instrumental grime records, as Lolingo, Zdot and Silencer are proving. On ‘Let’s Go’, The Square founding member Lolingo draws for Swindle-esque brass instrument-fuelled chops (‘Ring Out’), playful video game sonics (‘Crumpitss’) and East Asian-inflected face melters (‘Purple Crown’).
Silencer aka Teddy is one of grime’s biggest and most recognisable producers. On ‘Military’ he draws together an arsenal of instrumental weapons, brimming with his characteristic chugging beats, infectious melodic chops and ‘Teddy’ tag, while ‘Start’ sees him loop in fellow grime producer at the top of his game, Fitlhy Gears. Any grime DJ worth their salt should have this one in their collection.
'The New Dimension'
Tommy B has capitalised on the hype that’s found him lining many one-to-watch lists in 2019. Snubbing the ‘grime is dead’ narrative, latest project ‘The New Dimension’ looks to the future, delivering bludgeoning grime and tales of true-life street living. Boasting features from Discarda, Syer B, President T and more, the tape sees Tommy coming into his own.