Hear The Track HereOne of the brightest sparks in my own personal hiphop charts is in fact an English rapper who we all know as Stain(ed) Art. While it would be true to say that being English I am duty bound to like home grown hiphop, it's also true that Stain(ed) Art is worth it. An excellent rapper is an excellent rapper, whether he's spouting in Swahili or Ebonics. Ever since I first came across him back in 2005, Stain's extremely wry, entertaining and often enlightening lyrics has always been a welcome sight on my review list. Everything changes, however and maybe this particular change heralds great things. Stain, ya see, is 50% of The Forcefield Kids; the other 50% coming from producer/deejay Sleepy - who, btw, is not a dwarf.
I've already reviewed one of this duo's tracks; Little Miss Star (January 2009) and really liked what I heard, to be sure it was different enough. I'm not sure if No Signal is going to be on the upcoming EP Home from Mutate Records but I see no reason why not, at least from Stain's angle. I'm assuming that the musical content is coming from either both guys or from Sleepy and the song credits three people, but whichever, its a fairly classic hiphop lick that comes across - the sort of thing you can hear from any self respecting Soundclick 'beat factory'. That's a compliment btw because - believe me - this is a tough, tough market. I'm not sure whether the vinyl scratches or intentional or whether I have a bad copy but for me, it was a bit superfluous. The music revolves around guitar and a high, tinkly lead line that works surprising well, especially when the organ sound backs it up.
The real joy for me, as always, are the lyrics and Stain's own way of putting them across, He's always been a bit of a gobby geezer and time has just refined that. He's also always been very opinionated and is liable to pick up on all kinds of themes and images to put his point across. In this case, it's a fairly harrowing personal tale and you really have to understand the lyrics to really understand the tone and tenor of the musical accompaniment. Stain, though, is one of those rare rappers who is not afraid to display his lyrical ability by posting the lyrics. He is proud of lyrics and so he should be and I do urge you most strongly to read the lyrics while listening to the track - and bring a box of tissues...
Excellent UK hiphop with a cautionary tale. Highly Recommended.