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Author: Jesal 'Jay Soul' Padania

[UK Hip Hop Month] Although the title of this editorial somewhat ruined the surprise, I shall merely parrot out the message it was trying to get across: welcome to UK Hip Hop Month on! (OK, that was just sheer plagiarism). As the token Brit on the site, it's wonderful to be able to angle the spotlight one month a year on some of my local artists. There are ones who are just starting out, more established underground acts, commercially successful MC's, critically acclaimed artists, and others simply beyond definition.

"Hip Hop" is a vast umbrella term nowadays, and you'll witness rappers coming from wildly different scenes: Grime, Burban, soul, dance, boom bap and all that comes in between. I urge you to open your minds, as well as your ears, and listen without prejudice. And seriously, don't use that "but the accent is weird!" argument please. It just takes a bit of effort and readjustment (hey, if you could understand Eminem on "Relapse" you can crack any enigma).

It is shaping up to be the broadest and largest UK Month thus far, and some of the artists who will be reviewed include: Plan B, Klashnekoff, Devlin, Raxstar, Wretch 32, Sam Kay, Speech Debelle, Example, The Truth, Rizzle Kicks and many more. Plus, if that wasn't enough, there are also some classic "Back to the Lab" reviews in the pipeline, including Tricky and Roots Manuva.

I learned a valuable lesson in 2002. That year was pretty dead, as far as hip hop went. There were a few great albums, but not enough to quench my thirst. So, I delved into the classics that I had to catch up on, and also investigated non-American rap. It was truly the most important year of my education within the genre, as my vision expanded, and everything I thought I knew was suddenly placed within (let's face it) a very isolated New York State of Mind. There is more to this beloved genre of ours than just "that 90's New York shit" and a decade on, this is certainly even more the case. So please enjoy October on RapReviews, and utilise it as an opportunity to boost your palette the road less travelled, and all.

Peace, Jesal

Week One - 02/10/2012:

* Example: Playing in the Shadows
* Klashnekoff: FTLT (F*** The Long Talk)
* Phi-Life Cypher: Millennium Metaphors
* Us3: Broadway & 52nd
* Wretch 32: Wretchercise

Week Two - 09/10/2012:

* Devlin: Watchtower EP
* DJ Fricktion: The #Burban Mixtape
* Raxstar: Late on Time
* Roots Manuva: Brand New Second Hand

Week Three - 16/10/2012:

* MC Wood-Z: Shakespeare's Bastard Child
* Rebel MC: Black Meaning Good
* Rizzle Kicks: Stereo Typical

Week Four - 23/10/2012:

* dan le sac vs Scroobius Pip: The Logic of Chance
* Soldjasoulz: Soulz of the Storm
* Tricky: Pre-Millennium Tension

Week Five - 30/10/2012:

* Evian Christ: Kings and Them
* Plan B: Ill Manors
* Razor: Progression

Originally posted: October 2nd, 2012

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