Not every piece of music has to start revolutions, similarly not every track has to merely re-invent the wheel, and between the cutting edge and the tried and tested you find Johnny H and his blend of old-school, slow grooving hip-hop, confident street level rap and swirling electronica vibes. Okay, we have heard it all before, sort of, it’s built on a certain familiarity, for sure, and sticks faithfully to the rap canon of cool flow and edgy content but it is also cohesive, glossy, stylish, and sophisticated, as his candied melodies get compressed through a sleepy, singsong delivery.
And it is this addictive combination of hypnotic vocal delivery and trippy accessibility which really moves the ball forward, breaks out of the comfort zones and offers a new take on an old sound. It is the perfect eulogy for the streets, the hustle, the hassle, the grime and the game, it plays to stereotypical images but it drips with dark reality. If ever rap music spoke with the aspirations and aggrandisements of the young urban experience, this is where it is said most eloquently in rap’s own first language.