Tuesday, 30 October 2012

#3: Verbose and Socially Aware: Northen Hip-Hop just got better

The UK hasn't always been the hotbed for Hip-Hop it's come to be today. The current popularity of Don't Flop has catapulted rap battles in to the mainstream media over the past two years with the brand growing quicker than Gary Glitter's court cases. It's no surprise then that the talent isn't just sectioned to the south of England, artists such as Blizzard (whose rap battle with school teacher and poet Mark Grist is still racking up views on Youtube) are bringing Manchester to the forefront of the scene outside of London. Manchester already has a number of established emcees merging with the ranks of Indie royalty, but it's their relatively unknown contemporaries that should be causing a stir over the next year; enter Crowd Reaction.

Described by  founder, producer and rapper Smky as "label that produces music and videos for local artists", Crowd Reaction has just dropped it's first mix-tape Dirty Anti-Fiction featuring 3 rappers from South Manchester. It's a non-profit business venture that's dedicated to getting local talent noticed. Not just limited to music either Crowd reaction encourages anyone to get in touch with them if they want their talent exhibiting, and are eager to help people who would otherwise go unnoticed get the recognition and the exposure they deserve. All contact information will be provided below.

Produced in four months once the tracks were written, Dirty Anti-Fiction  is a "quick production to get the ball rolling". Quick or not, the mix-tape is a staggering first effort from the DIY label/media enterprise that's the brainchild of Robert 'Smky' Costello and Adam 'Sweed' Humphrey. The usually consistent lyricism suggests an intelligence and a societal awareness that was integral to making the mix-tape what it is: a social commentary. Jaded by the current coalition Dirty Anti-Fiction acts as a mouthpiece for a youth disaffected and mostly condemned in the mainstream media. Over the course of 8 full tracks (and one skit) the EP paints a picture of South Manchester life, with the final track Prejudice by the aforementioned Smky being the highlight of the whole thing that serves as a how to... guide to life that most people would benefit from adhering to. Rather than harbouring a guns, bitches and bling mentality, Crowd Reaction have distilled an ethos that digs deeper than most UK rap cares to. Those who aren't fans of Grime or Hip-Hop will more than likely be turned off by the colloquial accents of Smky, Tense and Dynamic, but for those who want to see a picture of Manchester painted with unusual eloquence and verbosity for the Hip-Hop genre should definitely cop this free download, or get in touch with Crowd Reaction for a hard copy. Expect big things in the future, you won't be disappointed.

Listen now: Prejudice - Smky