Original Pirate Materialby The Streets
It's too easy to call Mike Skinner, a.k.a. the Streets, the British Eminem, given that both are working-class, hip-hop-bred blokes with a boy-next-door face and an electrifying delivery. But where Em spews venom to settle personal scores, the 22-year-old Skinner is too busy chronicling the youth culture of Blair's Britain. Skinner's songs are peppered with visceral day-in-the-life details chronicling beer and drug consumption, video game addictions, pub brawls, iffy relationships, and life on the dole -- minus the potty mouth that makes Eminem so abrasive to women, gays, and generally sensible folks. It's a bland council-flat existence where music represents escape and salvation. Skinner's lyrical flow may borrow from Yankee rappers, but his Birmingham-by-way-of-South London accent, his deadpan verbosity, and his 2-step garage beats are distinctly British. Americans had a taste of the garage style on Craig David's soul hit Born to Do It, but Skinner's homemade beats are raw as sushi and potent as wasabi. His songs are theatrical, but there's little role-playing -- outside of the hilarious "The Irony of It All," a sparring match between a lager-fueled Joe and a pothead college student, both played by Skinner. More representative is the mock soul "Has It Come to This?," in which he builds tension by pitting an easy-on-the-ears music bed -- a soul sample, a slinky keyboard, electronic beats -- against his drug-addled but eerily lucid flow, a breathless tale that reports, almost journalistically, on a geezer's typical day. Equally jarring and compelling is "Let's Push Things Forward," a horn-sprinkled tune that evokes the Specials' politically charged ska hit "Ghost Town" with lyrics that turn on a dime from biting to wasted: "This ain't your typical garage joint/I make points which hold significance/That ain't a bag, it's a shipment/This ain't a track, it's a movement...I make bangers, not anthems/Leave that to the Artful Dodger." He's part underground CNN, part amped-up knob-twiddler, and Mike Skinner's debut -- already nominated for Britain's Mercury Prize -- is a dance music event: smart, compelling, yes, banging -- and not to be missed.
- Release Date:
- Vice Records
Performance CreditsStreets Primary Artist
Kevin Mark Trail Vocals
Technical CreditsMike Skinner Arranger,Producer,Engineer
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This cd is a new era of british rap and hip-hop. Some people may say it is bad. But i LOVE IT!
This is solid. The kind of album that occurs only when you get someone wanting to do things his own way and not yet having to kowtow to the music industry. It is original. Look, to say he's the "British Eminem" is to do a disservice to this album. It stands up on it's own to be sure. It's clever. Smart with out being snobby. These are songs not just raps. Just buy it already and you'll see.
If you want words, if you want lyrics, and if you don't need to much music to wrap it all up, this is the album for you. The music is too shallow in this Clash-like-reggea-on a keyboard album. The ideas are nice, but dude, where's are the tunes?
I heard one of The Street's songs on the radio, and I was really struck by how offbeat and refreshing it was. I got on his website and looked at his altogether funny and amazing video collection, and I knew I had to buy this CD. I am not a rap fan as a rule, but I really love this album - it has not left my cd player since I got it. I reccomend this to anyone, it is funny, and surprisingly smart. While some of it may strike some as strange, keep listening, The Streets are here to stay.
this an absolutely great CD- it goes up there with Phish's Rift and the Beatles's Sgt. Pepper, some of my all-time favorite albums. As another comment said, I also don't go for rap as a rule, but this is not rap, it is pure brilliance and geniosity. But it ASAP!
I just picked this album up yesturday and I've played it about 40 times already. It's very original and has a definitely off-beat sound. If you want some good smokin music this is it!