Strong grime cuts battle with cheesy contenders.
Elle J Small 2009
Infused with the same hyperactive energy of lyricist Bashy’s best-selling mix-tapes, Catch Me If You Can features crisp production and themes that will appeal to a young audience. Slick street tunes and witty lyrics are at war with cheesy takes on American R&B and ego-enhancing rhymes.
Opening with the laidback, jazzy beats of Before Before, Bashy reminisces on his rise through the underground. In sharp contrast, Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? is more effective as it goes in for the kill with its dark, grimy beats and jungle influence.
While She’s A Gangsta features polished production, the immature lyrics and delivery let the side down. Popular British trio N Dubz then pop up on Travel The World with its scorching beats, catchy lyrics and accessible theme.
Cinematic storytelling features on the well-crafted Change while Copy Cat yields jarring, childish lyrics, bleeps and bass. And while Ransom includes both heavyweight production and creative verse, it lacks hit potential and ultimately isn’t a track you’ll want to listen to more than once.
With strong American R&B influence, Living My Dream is an honest account of fighting for fame. Bashy takes us through his journey of “spitting” on pirate radio stations and driving buses to releasing tracks and making money from his craft.
Weak album filler follows before the best is left till last. Raw to the core, grime cut Kildulthood 2 Adulthood lands crash, bang in your speakers with its dark lyrics, street scenes and firing beats. The lead single from the critically acclaimed Adulthood movie, this grimy vibe hits harder than Bashy’s R&B tunes. Closer Black Boys salutes famous black men: including musicians P. Diddy and Dizzee Rascal, footballer Jermaine Defoe, comedian Lenny Henry and even news reader Trevor MacDonald.
After bubbling away on the UK’s underground garage and grime scene since the turn of the millennium, Bashy has taken some time to release his official debut studio album. The result is slightly unbalanced. Strong, grime cuts battle with cheesy contenders while radio-friendly R&B attempts to fend off album filler. Leave the album alone but be sure to purchase your favourite tracks.