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Dizzee Rascal - general "We love you Dylan!!!!" thread

No star here laces
06:29 / 30.08.04
yeah, so hype hype blah blah everybody's talking about the boy from E3. Cos, guess why? Dizzee Rascal is everything that you should love about music. "Showtime" makes me excited in a way that an album hasn't done since, I dunno, "Boy in da corner" actually.

But it's better. Boy in da corner was a great collection of tracks. "Showtime" is a great unstoppable train of an argument making one sole point - Dizzee's talent is fucking undeniable.

It's not just that he flows as well as a US MC. He flows better than any of them. Ever. I actually mean that. I've listened to the album three or four times now and I hardly even notice the production because his voice holds all of my attention.

I dunno, this record leaves me in an incoherent flurry of enthusiasm. Kinda like the black album did in a way, but this is more profound. Like Jay-Z I looked up to. Dizzee seems more like a friend. I feel blessed that a style of music that I've loved for a long time (not always for the best of reasons) has come up with something this good. I feel proud that the UK now has a real answer to hip hop. I feel all agog at the prospect that there will be another album next year and it might be EVEN BETTER.

Any thoughts?

You can download a track from the album on my blog if you wanna.
11:10 / 01.09.04
I think you may be a bit premature with this one, Laces - I went to buy it last night, and apparently it's not out till next week. Rest assured I'll contribute then.
Regrettable Juvenilia
12:44 / 01.09.04
There's also another thread here, just so ya know...
No star here laces
13:11 / 01.09.04
Well I'm gonna post on MY thread, so there.

Been listening to it more, and my opinion changed somewhat. Much like the black album, my first listen carried me away on a massive wave of enthusiasm to later be replaced by a more considered view (not exactly surprising).

I think "Showtime" is probably commercial and critical suicide on Dizzee's part, but utterly laudable nonetheless.

Having demonstrated versatility, emotional depth and wide horizons on "Boy in da corner" he's deliberately narrowed his scope on Showtime.

It feels like an album by and for London garage heads. What with the songs namechecking Gods Gift and NASTY crew and talking about bouncers not recognising him, plus the ever-present flat sub-bass he is acknowledging the garage scene far more than he ever did on BIDC even though neither album consists of actual garage songs.

And the "fuck me that's INCREDIBLE" moments on this album are much less obvious than those on BIDC - there's nothing as immediate as 'Fix up look sharp' or 'I luv u' or even 'Jus a rascal' with the exception of the one that samples "Happy talk".

But his voice. My god, his voice. It's improved so much it's immeasurable. The man is a literal virtuoso. I don't care what he raps about.
No star here laces
13:46 / 01.09.04
Awww, fuck all that. It just floored me again.

You know why I love this over and above BIDC?

This is so much more FUN. BIDC was impressive, emotional all that ish. This is just a riot from start to finish.
13:55 / 01.09.04
Red Cross Iodized Salt
02:26 / 02.09.04
A low bitrate torrent of the whole thing is still available via (which is worth registering on for plenty of other stuff as well).
Regrettable Juvenilia
15:43 / 08.09.04
Just paid my ten pounds for this.

Mmmm. It's nice and aggressive isn't it? 'Learn' and 'Hype Talk' in particular. The production on the former reminds me of the first Killah Priest album or something. Dignified menace.
Regrettable Juvenilia
15:44 / 08.09.04
Also, best start to a rap album (let's not have the genre argument again: an album with rapped vocals) since Clipse's 'Virginia'. Fuck an intro skit!
Regrettable Juvenilia
17:33 / 10.09.04
'Imagine' - like a British cross between 'Juicy' and 'We Will Survive'. It gives me shivers. Fuck John Lennon.

Album of the year to listen to whilst walking around London. Probably album of the year full stop.
No star here laces
16:31 / 12.09.04
I can't stop listening to it. It grows and grows, unlike BIDC which, barring the singles, paled a lot for me after a while.

Stand up tall, in particular, i thought was really lightweight at first, but there's so much to it.

Mmmmmmm. Dizzee. I love that man.
10:58 / 14.09.04
That's odd - my reaction to BIDC followed the reverse process of yours, Laces, in that my admiration for it just grew and grew over the months that I owned it, in fact probably culminating at about the time I realised Showtime had leaked onto p2p networks. Perhaps it's to do with familiarity - you were hyping Dizzee in this forum before I'd really heard of him, so I assume you must have been into him /UK garage in general for a while, whereas I had the whole "squeezing a shocking new sound into my tiny brain" thing to deal with.

I'm going to make a couple of comparisons that have elements of beard, but bear with me... BIDC, or at least my reaction to it, reminds me in some ways of Company Flow's "Funcrusher Plus" and Roots Manuva's "Brand New Second Hand". All debut albums with a stripped down, beats'n'rhymes'n'not much else style that on my first hearing sounded startling and exciting, but initially somewhat narrow, until I properly got my head inside them and marvelled at the variation produced from apparently simple ingredients. The difference being that Dizzee has done what I wished the other two acts mentioned were going to do with their second albums, that is, to present a refined & progressed version of the sound they've established. Much as I've enjoyed subsequent stuff from Roots and El-P, and not that I want to argue against artists moving on, obviously, I was always disappointed that they spurged out stylistically so much. There's something so...mmm.. chewy, and satisfying, about an album that has the consistency and single-mindedness of Showtime or BIDC, as if it forces you to get inside its mindset and accept it totally on its own terms. "No, you can't listen to this as you do any old music, this is a Dizzee Rascal album, Motherfucker!"

And it's only about five minutes since the last album! And he's just a wee lad! The guy is incredible. I'm listening to Showtime right now and currently digging on the little parallels between the two albums - "Fickle" and "Do It" for example, the change from the desparate "this shit had better work" of the earlier track (cf Basement Jaxx's "Lucky Star") to the "Next level then. Bring it!" of "Fickle". Or "Young baby mothers yo I got your back as well... that kid's the next generation planet Earth", off "Dream" compared to the entirety of "Luv Ting".

One of the many things I love about dream is the way he quashes any criticism of its silliness with the spoken bits at the start and end of the track, the "how am I gonna pull this off without sounding daft?" ending up as "You love that! Tell me you don't love that!". Plus of course the local-pride moment of "I'm from the LDN, there's no forgetting that, and the big UK, I stay repping that - HUH!"

And yeah - definitely the ultimate walking around London album. The other day I was actually walking past Well Street at exactrly the same moment as he namechecked it on my walkman. Joy!
Regrettable Juvenilia
12:33 / 22.09.04
Current favourite track: 'Respect Me', the chorus for which sees Dizzee painstakingly enunciating over and over again the words "You people are going to respect me. If. It. Kills. You." Ė bludgeoning potential enemies and doubters with the sheer deadening repetition of it. He really drags and drawls the words out, too, and all of a sudden those Tricky comparisons start to make sense.

It's hard to see an artist as threatening after Mercury Music Prizes and NME awards, but 'Respect Me' might make you feel a little intimidated by Dizzee. But he also takes the time out to scoff at those who would put the blame for actual violence on his music:

"endless speculation, Iím facing
constant controversial relation
to gun crime at garage events
with so many claims and no evidence
since Justin* Iím the reason
for the UK gun clap season..."**

And you can't really argue with that.

*Timberlake, who he's also opened for on tour.

PS: How fucking funny and camp and bizarre is Marga Man? He's like this naughty schoolboy dropping cheeky rhymes about girls' bums but in this kind of Kenneth Williams manner (except it's obviously really a Slick Rick manner). Grebt!
Regrettable Juvenilia
10:18 / 07.06.07
God that last post is embarrassing - the lyric was "suggestin' I'm the reason", not "since Justin I'm the reason". Ah, the folly of youth.

Anyway, Maths & English, then - anyone heard it? I've only heard one track so far but it's amaaaay-zing: 'Where Da Gs', featuring UGK and laying into fake thugs who he sees on the telly who need to pull up their pants, etc. Dizzee sounds perfectly at home alongside Bun B and Pimp C, and must surely be amongst the first ever British MCs of whom that could be said, if not THE first.
15:14 / 07.06.07
Funny you should bump this - well, not that funny, this is a big week for grime, apparently with the Wiley LP out this week as well - but I was listened to the Logan Sama show off of Kiss (download here) and one track in particular blew me away: Durty Goodz They Back Me- it's just like you say Flyboy, the man sounds like an East London version of Bun B. It's a fucking awesome track, if this is what grime is sounding like these days, I'm going to be listening to more of it.
15:23 / 07.06.07
To qualify what I mean "like Bun B" - basically, I'm just stealing Fly's comment, but rapidfire flow with some really tight, intricate, clever rhyming built in.
Regrettable Juvenilia
16:34 / 07.06.07
There's a track on the new Wiley album called 'Flyboy'.

If anyone can find me an MP3 of this, they will be my new best friend.
Alex's Grandma
16:53 / 07.06.07
Is Pimp C really a pimp, do we think? And if he isn't, I wonder what it is about that lifestyle he finds worthy of celebration. Does he aspire to running his own team on the street, the staff of which he routinely drugs, beats up and generally intimidates? And if so, what's he doing in hip-hop? And, perhaps more to the point, what on earth is wrong with him? I'm assuming he's basically just a very silly, and misguided, young man, but he could have called himself pretty much anything else - the fact that he didn't seems a shame, really.

If, say, the drummer from Razorlight had announced to the public that he wanted to be known as The Kiddy Fiddler, I imagine a few eyebrows would have been raised. And yet what about Pimp C's antics is any more defensible?
Alex's Grandma
17:23 / 07.06.07
I mean if anyone's a fake thug who needs to pull up their pants, surely it's Pimp C? At least unless he's 4 real, in which case, shouldn't he be in prison?
Regrettable Juvenilia
17:43 / 07.06.07
Recently he was in prison, although for "failing to complete a community service requirement stemming from an aggravated assault charge". But anyway. Some this has been covered elsewhere, Granny, such as in your own Jay-Z and Morrisey thread, but whether a discussion of the ethics of Pimp C's name carries on in an existing thread or a new one, I think it's too big a subject to discuss here without throwing the thread off course.
Gypsy Lantern
19:48 / 07.06.07
This, however:

If, say, the drummer from Razorlight had announced to the public that he wanted to be known as The Kiddy Fiddler, I imagine a few eyebrows would have been raised.

Has brightened up what has otherwise been a deeply irritating day.
20:04 / 07.06.07
Much of the surprise would have been at the thought that Razorlight had a drummer, surely.

I'd quite like a thread on the subject, though, but one conducted in the manner above (namely, according to Haus' recent announcment that all discussion should be undertaken with the assumption of best possible motive), so that we get very long, very qualified sentences of increasingly lazer-like precesion until we eventually discover everyone has essentilly the same opinion, and it's all gravy.

I do, incidently, have little vested interest in what that opinion turns out to be,. I just want us to all have the same one, and spend a long time getting there. A meaty yet harmonious discussion seems like just the sort of thing I want right now. Also, please in Head Shop.

In other news; it's been years! I keep thinking he's fallen off, but he's clearly not.
Essential Dazzler
15:56 / 09.06.07
I'm really liking Maths + English so far.

It isn't as cold as BIDC which bizzarely made it harder for me to get into it initially, but it's fairly awesome.

Sirens is probably my favourite track so far. As much as my tastes have changed over the years, I still get excited by big stonking guitars.

Wanne Be, the Lily Allen track, is also awesome. Never thought I'd hear something so pop from Rascal.

Offtopic: I'm horribly out of touch, is Grime as whole moving away from the cold and dark thing? Most of the stuff I've heard like that recently has been dubstep.
Essential Dazzler
15:09 / 29.06.07
I would like it to be known that since the last post I have fully recovered, and now dislike the Lily Allen track intensely.

I've also finally gotten hold of Showtime, and it's sort of changed my mind about M&E as a whole, I like it a bit less. But my copy is stuck where I can't listen to it so I can't really investigate that.
15:59 / 02.06.09
Anybody else seen the Sirens video: ?

It's very good. Possibly comic-book inspired?
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