One of my all-time favourite crews, Bristol’s Numskullz (consisting of Rola, Jay Le Surgeon and DJ Rumage) left an indelible mark on the UK Hip-Hop scene of the mid-to-late 90s with their unique brand of true-school beats and rhymes.
Tracks such as 1997’s dramatic “The Difference” and 1998’s neck-snapping “G.O.D.” blended Rola’s cerebral, thought-provoking verses with impeccable, sample-based production, a potent combination which resulted in a slew of underground homegrown classics being unleashed from the trio’s musical lab.
“The Lost Chapters” is a brilliant compilation of Numskullz gems recorded between 1996 and 2000 – essential listening for both younger heads wanting to educate themselves on the history of UK Hip-Hop and those who purchased these tracks on wax back in the day who want to be reminded of the talent contained within the brilliant three-man unit.
With group lyricist B’Tilla on something of a hiatus, the remaining three members of Bristol’s Bastard Sunz (Milestone, DJ Rouge and Rola of Numskullz fame) continue the dope musical madness heard on their 2010 debut album “Le Discotheque Martyrdom” with this new EP – peep it here.
Posted in Downloads, UK Hip-Hop
Tagged B'Tilla, DJ Rogue, Independent Hip-Hop, Le Discotheque Martyrdom, Milestone, Numskullz, Rola, The Bastard Sunz, UK Hip-Hop, Underground Hip-Hop
Milestone & Rola Roc – “Group Therapy” (TBS / 2012)
Dope track produced by Numskullz member Rola and taken from the forthcoming release “The Bastard Sunz Present: The Waiting For Tilla EP”.
The Bastard Sunz Present…
“Le Discotheque Martyrdom”
In much the same way that New York was once the epicentre of stateside Hip-Hop, dictating the direction of the music and culture from an almost unquestionable position of authority, the majority of the UK rap community often looked towards London to set the trends. Yet even since rap’s early days in Britain, artists from Bristol and the South West have always walked their own path, from the brilliant Numskullz to the quirky Aspects.
Continuing the Bristolian tradition of creative individuality, The Bastard Sunz’ “Le Discotheque Martyrdom” is a gleefully executed middle finger to what the Sunz themselves describe as a largely “stale, monotonous” UK Hip-Hop scene. The musical equivalent of “The Wicker Man” meets “Wild Style”, “Le Discotheque…” draws the listener into an off-kilter world of twisted imagery, dark humour, politically-incorrect punchlines and unique beats. Emcees B’Tilla and Mylo do a good job here of displaying the various facets of their rhyming abilities, from battle-ready lines to more concept-driven verses, all the time showing a chemistry that can only come from close friendship as well as a shared love of beats and lyrics.
The relentless “Top Rank” boasts sparse, old-school influenced production with the Sunz taking shots at “pussycat rappers trapped in big tiger chokeholds”, whilst the unsettling “The Shades” showcases the brilliant story-telling talents of B’Tilla as he weaves dark narratives around crisp production from Rola of the aforementioned Numskullz.
Whilst “Le Discotheque…” is full of wit and sarcasm, one of the album’s standout tracks is Mylo’s solo cut “Crescendo”, which finds the brutally honest wordsmith detailing his battles with personal demons over Flipz’ stirring strings. Elsewhere, the atmospheric “Jesus Loves Jamie Bastard” is a vicious cut-and-paste track built around the turntable skills of crew member DJ Rogue.
Like a smiling clown holding a baseball bat behind his back, “Le Discotheque Martyrdom” is a heady mix of unpredictable playfulness and underlying menace. Overall, the album is an impressive debut that will keep those who take the time to check it out entertained from beginning to end. Bristol side wins again.
Posted in Album Reviews, UK Hip-Hop
Tagged B'Tilla, Bristol Hip-Hop, DJ Rogue, Flipz, Independent Hip-Hop, Le Discotheque Martyrdom, Milo, Numskullz, Rola, The Bastard Sunz, UK Hip-Hop, Underground Hip-Hop