This is one hell of a debut album. More than once, during the build up to the release of GSAP, I doubted whether Stormzy was going to be able to pull it off. He certainly hasn’t disappointed.
Stormzy has taken the UK by storm recently. No pun intended. With, quote, “one top 10, five sold out tours”, and Gang Signs and Prayer tipped to go straight to number one in the charts, Stormzy doesn’t seem to be showing any signs of slowing down either.
From start to finish, Gang Signs and Prayer is an amazing body of work. The significance of the album makes it so much better. Krept and Konan’s debut album, The Long Way Home, had the potential to be this significant. Stormzy is bridging the gap between popular culture and British urban music more than anybody has done before. Since when have so many ‘underground’ rappers been on the radio? It’s really a great thing to see how well grime is doing right now.
Despite speculation that he was going to sign for a label, Stormzy has managed to do everything he’s achieved whilst independent. As he says in his Not For The Radio interview, he’s used his friends’ skills to put together a team – #Merky Records.
One of the best things about Gang Signs and Prayer is the variety of different songs there are. You have grime tracks like Big For Your Boots, Cold and Mr Skeng, and you have those more heart felt songs like Blinded By Your Grace, 21 Gun Salute and, my personal favourite, 100 Bags.
This is one of the best albums in a long time, and if you haven’t listened already then you’re missing out!
Album rating: 10/10
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