This summer, two of the biggest names in the UK rap scene released a four-track EP “Split Decision”. Dave who has sold the most rap albums in the UK and Central Cee- the biggest UK rapper globally, initially released “Sprinter” which took the world by storm with their music video hitting 8 million views in four days.
In 2020, Skepta, Chip and Young Adz released “Insomnia”. A fuse of three eras of UK rap, including two of the biggest names in the UK grime scene, who paved the wave and contributed to grime’s global appeal. Despite this EP being released during lockdown, it didn’t have the lasting impact it was expected to have.
Across the pond, the US has seen several joint projects over the years, “Savage Mode” by Metro Boomin & 21 Savage, “What a Time to Be Alive” by Drake & Future and, most notably “Watch the Throne” by Jay-Z & Kanye West. The impact these have made on the music scene goes far beyond what our friends in the UK have achieved. Particularly, its memorability but also its production levels and lyricism.
It begs the question if UK collab rap albums are for the hype or for the art.
Rap, hip-hop, and grime fans alike have been lucky enough to see some of the biggest names come together and produce various bodies of art, but sadly the same can’t be said for many other genres. Who would you like to create a collaborative piece of work next?
By: Steph B. ︎