Fabric Live – Tropical Gang (JME, Preditah, Logan Sama etc)

Fabric

The last time I went Fabric was a while ago, so I was anticipating on this event, as I knew it would be a good night, and well it definitely was, I mean any Grime night is a good night :)

I was counting down how long it would be till JME would grace the stage, as I have been listening to his album Integrity non stop, so to hear it live would be amazing.

Prior to him performing, Slimzee & Flowdan were on stage, and knew how to keep the crowd buzzing. The DJ sets that followed were really good, as they took it old school to Dizzee Rascal’s Boy In The Corner tracks, to P Money’s ‘Gameover’ , and if P Money was played, that was of course followed by OG’z.Then the latest in Grime was played, such as Stormzy’s ‘Know Me From’.

Throughout the night in between the DJ sets, they kept playing the instrumental to JME’s track ‘Pulse 8′, which I thought was a great touch, as it created the anticipation for his performance.

When JME graced the staged, I had made it to the front by then, and of course the mosh pit had started too. Everyone was so hyped up to see JME, and I was like of course 10x more hype, I couldn’t stop smiling.

JMEEEEEE

JME performed tracks from his album such as ‘No You Ain’t’,’96 F**kries’ and  more, and he brought out Skepta on stage with him for ‘Don’t @ Me’, and then Skepta went on to perform ‘That’s Not Me’.

(JME performing ‘No You Ain’t’)

(JME performing ’96 F**kries’)

(JME & Skepta – ‘Don’t @ Me’)

(Skepta performing ‘That’s Not Me’)

When JME performed ‘Man Don’t Care’, which features Giggs, I was not expecting for Giggs to actually be there! The crowd did not either, as everyone pushed towards the stage and were screaming when he came on stage with his bright white jacket. He performed his verse off the track and then he left the stage. I think it was such a good performance, and what made it better was by JME bringing the artists to join him on stage, it made the performance that more memorable, that if you missed out, you would be regretting it because it was a nice surprise. However even if JME performed on stage alone, I still know it would of been a great performance, as he is a great artist.

(Giggs performing his verse for ‘Man Don’t Care’)

Below: Pictures from the night taken by me

IMG_2719(JME)

IMG_2721(JME)

IMG_2731(Skepta)

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IMG_2736(Skepta, and JME behind him)

IMG_2740(JME and Skepta)

J.Cole Live In London at the O2 Arena

When arriving at the O2 Arena for the concert, there were long queues for each entrance, showing clearly that the concert was sold out. The last time J.Cole was in London was for his show at Hammersmith, where he announced that the next time he was in London, he would perform at the O2 Arena, which is exactly what he did.

The opening acts

London showed Pusha T a lot of love whilst he was performing on stage, as they knew every word for each track he performed. He performed ‘New God Flow’ and ‘Runaway’. Everyone was standing up, no one was seated as they enjoyed the rapper’s performance. He ended with ‘Move That Dope’ and his verse on ‘I Don’t Like’. The crowd were energetic the entire time.

(Pusha T performing ‘New God Flow’)

(Pusha T performing ‘Runaway’)

Pusha T

After a 15 minute intermission Jhene Aiko appeared on stage in her iconic long dress. The crowd welcomed her on stage by lighting up the dark arena with their phones, setting the mood for her smooth performance. She told the crowd; “Flawless and perfection is what you are expecting, I’m not gonna give you that , it should be about connecting with the audience, so I’m going to express myself and give you that.”

Jhene Aiko

She performed her verse on Omarion’s hit ‘Post To Be’. her verse from Drake’s ‘From Time’ as well as performing ‘The Worst’, from her EP Sail Out. She ended with ‘Spotless Mind’ from her album Souled Out.

(Jhene Aiko performing ‘The Worst’)

(Jhene Aiko performing ‘Post To Be’)

Personally I believe Jhene Aiko is a talented artist, however her vocals live and her stage presence are not good. Even when she opened for Drake last time he was in London, she had the same issue. So hopefully next time she is in London, this could be improved as she is a good artist, therefore her live performances can then be strengthened.

By the time J.Cole graced the stage, all the seats were filled, everyone had arrived to see the main event of the night!

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He started of his performance with ‘January 28th’, going in order of his latest album 2014 Forest Hills Drive. His stage set up included a black banner on the DJ decks table saying Forest Hills, and he had a backdrop, which was of his background on his album cover, to create the whole theme of his album visually on stage. As he performed the whole album, he narrated the whole way through, as the album is the story of his life growing up, so before each song, he told the story of the song he was performing and why it was created. This is something that has not been done before, so the uniqueness and originality that this concert contained is what made it such an incredible performance.

(J.Cole performing ‘Fire Squad’)

For his track ‘St. Tropez’, he told the crowd that he needs to share something with them. “I have to be honest with you guys, I have to let you know something, I don’t even know where St Tropez is, I just know it is for rich people, so this song is a metaphor.”

J. Cole went on to say “It comes from coming from a small city, small town mentality, you see places like St Tropez, London, Paris etc and you tell yourself you want to go there one day, it is a dream, people are stuck in a small mentality. they don’t leave the town their in.”

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This song is suppose to represent J. Cole breaking that small mentality as he left home as a teenager to go to New York to make his dreams in music come true. He explained to the crowd how he went through a hard time, as everyone kept turning him down, even when he had MySpace he messaged every record label and no one listened. Now he is here today, so he went on to say; “Never give up and now karma has come back around as people even from London send me messages saying to listen to their music, as it is the hottest shit out there and I actually go on SoundCloud and listen to their music, and it is shit, I think I wasted 42 seconds of my life that I wish I could get back, but either way, never give up your dream as someone will believe in you.”

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Then J.Cole went on to talk about the first music he put out, including ‘The Warm Up’ and ‘Friday Night Lights’, so then he went on to perform the classics ‘Lights Please’, ‘In The Morning’, Nobody’s Perfect’, and then he said it’s time to continue with the album schedule again.

He continued to perform the album with ‘G.O.M.D’.

(J.Cole performing ‘G.O.M.D’)

He then performed ‘No Role Modelz’, where he told the story of Hollywood females, majority of them being a certain way, and he was not holding back anything as he mentioned the track was in fact about “hoes”. He  went on to tell the story of a particular woman who was on Instagram , and it was full of pictures, which made guys thirsty, and he even said “You see a thirsty n***a like me would be on that Instagram too” and he acted out the last picture she posted as he said “her bathroom was messy as hell, like I was thinking the least you could do is clean it up, but she was holding the camera high to get the angle right and was wearing this thin lingerie bikini outfit, where if you zoom in you could see 3% nipple, and she had a caption that had nothing to do with the picture, and I was thinking damn she can read, she’s perfect.” Then he explained if you take off everything she had on her face, that was artificial, she wasn’t nice at all and he wanted to help her but he did not, and this song was for her.

(J.Cole performing ‘No Role Modelz’)

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After he finished the album he thanked the crowd for being so amazing for him and then he went off stage, as the arena went dark and a few people starting making their way out, I knew the night was not over, as he still did not perform a few classics. I was right as he came back on stage a minute later to perform ‘Can’t Get Enough’, ‘Work Out’ and ‘Power Trip’. He said he saved the best for last as London was the best show he had done for his European tour.

(J.Cole performing ‘Work Out’)

(J.Cole performing ‘Power Trip’)

(J.Cole saying London was the best show)

I cannot wait for J.Cole to come back again to London, because each time he comes back, he gets even more better as a performer. Everything about him, from his energy, to his stage presence, he is so talented and incredibly humble.

JME – ‘Integrity>’ Review

From JME always being my favourite UK artist, I have always anticipated each album that he has released, so when he announced he would be releasing a new album ‘Integrity>’, I was counting down the days till I could hear what he had recorded, as I knew he could never disappoint.

Even though he is my favourite artist, I have never been biased when it comes to music, so if something is not up to scratch, I will always make sure I analyse why. However with this album, there is definitely no negative feedback and that is my honest opinion!

Check out the track listing below for Integrity>:

Pulse 8

96 F**Kries

Taking Over

Work

Game

Same Thing

Amen ft. Skepta, Frisco, Shorty & Jammer

Again ft. D Double E

Break You Down ft. Big Narstie

The Money ft. Wiley

No You Ain’t

Calm

Man Don’t Care

Don’t @ Me ft. Skepta & Shorty

Test Me

Integrity

Each track on this album is one to listen to, like seriously, you won’t skip any of the tracks, because each track will grip you in from the start.  Starting with ‘Pulse 8′ and ending with ‘Integrity’.

’96 F**kries’, ‘Taking Over’ and ‘Man Don’t Care’ ft. Giggs, which was recently released with a music video, are tracks we are all familiar with, as they have all been released. However there are many more tracks on the album which include some great features; such as ‘Dont @ Me’ ft. Shorty & Skepta, ‘Break You Down’ ft. Big Narstie, ‘Amen’ ft. Skepta, Frisco, Shorty & Jammer, ‘Again’ ft. D Double E and ‘The Money’ ft. Wiley.

As JME says “If you don’t wanna dance to the beat, then bob your head to the beat”. With this album, you can literally do both! Each track is a head bobber from start to finish.

I really like ‘The Money’, because it addresses the music industry, with Wiley and JME sharing their thoughts as artists on where they stand. Below are lyrics from the track.

“I know A&R’s that made certain artist’s but they never made me”  – Wiley.

“I got a sick flow and I know what I’m worth, I’m not a thick soul just roaming the earth” – JME.

‘Don’t @ Me’ is a track that I think we were all expecting from JME, given how when some people on Twitter annoy him, he usually says he has to block them, so the track is  self explanatory, with Skepta & Shorty who also have their say too. Such a energetic track.

‘No You Ain’t’  is a track I can imagine being played in the club, which will make everyone go hype. My first thoughts  for this track was, what a banger!!!!

‘Again’ has such a classic Grime vibe to the track, from the production to the flow’s of JME & D Double E.

‘Amen’, which features the majority of BBK, also has that classic Grime element, with the energetic production alongside the fast flows of each artist. It has a Garage influence to the production as well, as if the track is taking it to the old school Garage/Grime days. This track unfortunately is a short one!

Integrity is such an inspirational and genuine album from JME, truly Grime influenced, just like all his material, and he has always been true to the genre and culture of Grime.  JME deserves credit, so much credit for this album, as he is truly a role model figure in my point of view for the scene, from everything he has accomplished to how talented he is. I hope he truly does go further with this release, as an independent artist, with all the hard work he puts in, he truly deserves it! As he says “The only day I don’t put in work is the 30th of February” –  JME – ‘Work’.

Watch ‘Man Don’t Care’ ft. Giggs below: 

Buy Jme – Integrity>

iTunes: 

Android:  

 

 

 

Rough Copy , J Holiday, Day 26, Pretty Ricky Live In London!!

Rough Copy, J Holiday, Day 26 and Pretty Ricky all in one night? Yes it’s true, there was an R&B reunion last night at Koko, and if you were not there, you definitely missed out!

Rough Copy were bringing R&B back to the UK as they were the first of the groups to perform on stage. They put a lot of energy in to their performance and put on a good show! All the tracks they performed had the crowd buzzing, I enjoyed their track ‘Sweet Love’.  We need more R&B bands like them in the UK!

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(Rough Copy performing last night at Koko)

J Holiday was next to grace the stage. He performed a few tracks before he ended with the classic hit he was always known for ‘Bed’. He also brought on stage two artists who were unknown to perform their single, which the crowd accepted with open arms. Even J Holiday was surprised with this response from the crowd and commented saying “It’s nice to see you guys going crazy over an unknown track, this is why we do it, and this is where you heard it first.” Overall he performed well, however the layout of his performance seemed disorganised. He had another man on stage with him, who looked as if it was his body guard or friend, but as the performance went on, this individual would throw his hands up in the air or be touching his heart when J Holiday sang his romantic lyrics, overall it was just an odd thing to witness.

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(J Holiday performing ‘Bed’)

(J Holiday performing ‘Suffocate’)

Finally it was time for Day 26. This is a band I had been following since the beginning, before they formed, when they were a part of Diddy’s Making The Band. Just like I assumed, they did not disappoint, however I do have to say it was clear to see who was putting in the energy on stage, and that was mostly Robert and Mike, Willie did at points too, but Q overall was not pleasing to watch. He seemed as if he did not want to be on the stage, at points he even was seen to be out of sync with the choreography too.

Robert was my favourite performer out of the four, he had so much energy, and his vocals sounded amazing, he just stood out the most as the best performer on stage at that point.

They performed singles from their albums ‘Day 26′ and ‘Forever In A Day’ as well as performing a few recent singles released.

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(Day 26 performing ‘Exclusive’)

(Day 26 performing ‘Since You Been Gone’)

(Day 26 performing ‘Got Me Going’)

Pretty Ricky were the headliners of the night, and when they appeared on stage it was quite clear why this was. As soon as they graced the stage, instantly you knew they were headliner material. Each member had so much energy, as their vocals were on point, as well as their stage presence being exciting to witness. However when they performed the first track on stage, Baby Blue’s chain only lasted a minute before it broke and fell off his neck. By the time they went on to perform their third track, Baby Blue decided to take off ALL his chains. Oh dear!

They performed tracks off  their classic ‘Bluestars’ album, as well as from ‘Late Night Special’. Although Pleasure P was not with them as he had left the band, Pretty Ricky announced on stage that they were reuniting again with Pleasure P and that when they return to the UK next time, it will be with Pleasure P. This was so good to hear as I believe Pretty Ricky were all talented in their own ways, however when put together they were a strong force, and they need Pleasure P again to record those classic R&B hits that we love so much!

Aside from performing their tracks, they also brought on 3 girls from the audience on stage, and one by one each member danced on each of the girls, over their track ‘Juicy’. (You will see in the video below)

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(Pretty Ricky performing ‘Nothing But A Number’)

(Pretty Ricky performing ‘Grind On Me’)

(Pretty Ricky performing ‘Push It’)

(Pretty Ricky dancing on the girls they brought on stage from the audience)

Overall the show was a great one. I definitely enjoyed, but it makes you realise that there are not many R&B bands around in the music industry anymore, not in the UK or the US. The show ended with all the acts who performed,  gathering together on the stage  performing ‘On The Hotline’, which is Pretty Ricky’s single.

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(Everyone on stage performing ‘On The Hotline’)

 

 

 

Don SLG – Brother From Another Ft Blacks

Don SLG alongside Blacks show us the meaning of brotherhood and loyalty. The video takes us to a genuine setting of everyday life, socialising with your friends, who are practically your brothers, always by your side and always loyal to you and vice versa.

If you enjoyed this track don’t worry as they have plenty more music to release this year!

Overall the video clearly speaks for itself, as it portrays realism. It is currently featured on GRM Daily.

Oh and it also features a cameo from yours truly :).

Watch the video below:

Jay-Z Launches Streaming Service Tidal, However…

Jay-Z launches streaming service Tidal, with the support of Kanye West, Rihanna, Beyonce, Madonna, Daft Punk and a few other artists. This platform will be the first streaming service owned by the artists.

Exclusive content from artists will be available only for Tidal users. Even Taylor Swift who removed her content from Spotify, has made her content available on Tidal. Tidal will be offering high quality music, where the other streaming services differ from this.

Tidal will be featuring high quality music, high quality music videos as well as curated editorial. There are two subscriptions offered. One is $9.99 a month, which is the Tidal Premium and offers you standard quality sound music with high definition music videos. For $19.99 a month, the Tidal HiFi costs $19.99 a month, which offers High Fidelity sound with high definition music videos and curated editorial. The public are able to try out Tidal for a free 30 day trial.

Jay-Z feels the Swedish high-quality audio streaming service, which he recently purchased differs,  because it is artist owned, they will be entitled to receive royalties which they rightly deserve from the music they place on Tidal. Whereas Spotify have a relationship with the major labels, who allow the steaming service to have their catalogue available to them, which the majors receive the royalties for.

Below Rihanna, Madonna and Kanye West were amongst the artists  who tweeted about Tidal, to make everyone change their display pictures to blue to support the streaming service. This was practically free advertisement for Jay-Z!

RIHANNA

MADONNA

KANYE WEST

 

HOWEVER..

Personally I feel Jay-Z chose the right time to launch his streaming service, as it is before Apple launch their one. Especially since Spotify has been receiving criticisms over artist royalty ever since Taylor Swift removed her content, which a few other country artists have also done since then.  Tidal is Spotify’s competitors for now as Spotify has been the biggest streaming service in the industry so far.

On the other hand I believe that when Apple launch their streaming service, both Spotify and Tidal will need to be on alert as Apple is the company which changed the way the music industry consumes music, to the format we purchase music on, to being the company that pushed the industry in to the digital era. Apple has always been a big game changer when it comes to the music industry, that it is clear that their streaming service will be no different from the impact they have already created.

Check out the official Tidal website:

http://tidal.com/gb?gclid=CPiX_4en08QCFSXnwgod55kA0A

 

 

 

King Kendrick Releases his album ‘To Pimp A Butterfly’

Kendrick Lamar landed us all in surprise with the news of dropping his album a week early on Spotify and iTunes. ‘To Pimp A Butterfly’ was due to be officially released on 23 March 2015.

The 16 track album is a different vibe from Kendrick, as there are elements of Jazz/Funk and even spoken word, this album is literally poetry, a powerful album.

Even though this album releasing was a surprise to us, to Kendrick, he seemed to know exactly what was going on as before the release he tweeted the following:

Yesterday. March 14th. Was a Special Day.

20 yrs. Later.

Keep calm. All is well.

TO PIMP A BUTTERFLY. (explicit version)

Go and listen to the album on Spotify and download now on iTunes! Check out the track listing and features below:

1. “Wesley’s Theory” feat. George Clinton & Thundercat
2. “For Free? (Interlude)”
3. “King Kunta”
4. “Institutionalized” feat. Bilal, Anna Wise & Snoop Dogg
5. “These Walls”
6. “U”
7. “Alright”
8. “For Sale? (Interlude)”
9. “Momma”
10. “Hood Politics”
11. “How Much A Dollar Cost” feat. James Fauntleroy & Ronald Isley
12. “Complexion (A Zulu Love)” feat. Rapsody
13. “The Blacker The Berry”
14. “You Ain’t Gotta Lie (Momma Said)”
15. “i”
16. “Mortal Man”

JME IS BACKKKKKKKKKKK, AND WITH A NEW ALBUM!!

So I don’t know if you noticed like I did that JME was nowhere to be seen on the TL on Twitter for a while, literally he went ghost, you heard nothing from him. It got worrying when I saw a hashtag flying around saying “#FreeJME”, I was like what was that about?, but yeah it seems JME was quiet, as he was working on something while he was away.

Yes! Yes! it’s true. JME is bringing us a new album!, he tweeted earlier ” History: Famous? Blam! Integrity>.”

Also Rude Kid posted up a picture of the album listing on Twitter, shown below:

He tweeted the picture alongside him saying “: Proud to be part of album.”

JME

 

JME has not stopped there, he has also mentioned how he wants to design his own creps (trainers), whilst he is waiting on his t-shirt and hat designs to come through. So JME has definitely got more than music to bring us, with him though, I expect nothing less.

Glad to have you back JME :)

Kanye West’s One Off Show In London With BBK And Others!

Live Nation surprised everyone yesterday evening when they announced that Kanye West would be doing a one off show in Koko, with doors opening at 11pm, on that same night.

If this was not enough to surprise you, it was also announced that Skepta alongside BBK would also be appearing at the show to perform as well. From the Brits performance with Kanye West & the Grime scene, if people did not know much about Grime, they will definitely start showing interest now.

At Koko last night, Kanye West brought out Big Sean, Raekwon, and Vic Mensa, whilst Skepta appeared on stage with BBK, Meridian Dan and Novelist.

(Kanye West performing ‘All Day’)

(Big Sean perfoming ‘I D F W U’ with Kanye West etc on stage)

(Skepta performing ‘Its Not Safe’ with BBK etc on stage)

By Kanye West doing this one off show, he has helped to begin bridging the gap between the UK and the US. He has helped Skepta and everyone else in the Grime scene to be more recognised, so when they do break in the US, everyone will already have an idea about them all.

Where Kanye West was known to be untouchable it seems now he is openly collaborating with various artists, as if he is giving back to the industry, which is always a great thing to do, and you do not see many artist’s doing this. It is pretty much what Skepta is doing over here for the UK music scene.

With Drake also showing interest in Skepta, hopefully we will soon see a Drake x Kanye West x Skepta track soon to surface.

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