Prancehall’s Bass Odyssey, Part 23

July 11, 2008

I was looking back through the archives of this column the other day and while laughing along at my totally hilarious observations I noticed that I had, for some reason, been swamping you with mentions of the "Rolex Sweep". With this in mind, I've decided to start this week by posting yet more "Rolex Sweep" (why fuck with the formula now?) in the form of the single's video.

After the click I will sum up why it goes against everything grime stands for.

1. It's got a chorus

Who remembers those old possee cuts which were nothing more than a barrage of bars? They were fine. There was no need to change those, no need to add anything. Who needs a chorus?

2. It's got a dance routine

A wise man called Trim once declared: "I don't dance much, still in the rave though," and if this hadn't already been my ethos in life, I would have made it this. Grime songs should not have dance routines. In fact, they should have anti-dance routines. There should be something in the song which makes you actively refrain from dancing. Hold on, don't most grime songs already have this property anyway?

3. It's been signed

Half the fun in grime was complaining about labels being too scared to pick up the music and then saying "the industry" was biased and totally against UK urban music. Now that every idiot (read: DJ Ironik, recently signed to Atlantic) is getting a record deal, what is there left to complain about?

Staying on the subject on Skepta briefly, above is a recording of the MC freestyling on the same beat Stat Quo's "Here We Go" is on. (BTW, what's with all these grime MCs talking about Ed Hardy clothing all of a sudden? Are they stocking it in JJB Sports now or something?) If you are a UK teenager and recognise this beat it will probably be the Giggs version you've heard, which is apparently the biggest song at the back of buses in Peckham this year so far. Right now Giggs is like the 2Pac of South London (if you're 13 and easily impressed). Anyway, the Skepta version is basically a rip-off, sorry tribute, to Giggs's cut. Skepta's pretty good at paying homage to other mic men (I mentioned his striking similarity to Mavado briefly here). I mean, for all we know his whole Boy Better Know thing could have just been borrowed off an incidental member of his old crew, such as Big H. Oh.

Moving on before anyone notices, you will be pleased to hear that the shitty song Dizzee Rascal did with Calvin Harris is currently number one over in the UK. I hate to slag off Dizzee Rascal because it's such an obvious thing to do at the moment - it's like shooting an anaesthetised whale in a barrel - but I can't help it. Safe in the knowledge that the worst song he has ever made has given him the most success, our man Dyl has decided to carry on making utter musical faeces. His latest output is a cover for Jo Whiley's Radio 1 show of "That's Not My Name" by the Ting Tings, who are almost indescribably bad. The only equivalent I can think of would be the Vengaboys. They are the Vengaboys of indie-pop. I'm not sure what that would now make Dizzee. It doesn't really bear thinking about. If you aren't easily offended, listen to the song below.

Dizzee Rascal, "That's Not My Name"

Prancehall’s Bass Odyssey, Part 23