Reigning in on the success of his Godfather record, UK Grime legend Wiley brings us the third chapter after a relatively disappointing second outing. Initially this third installment felt like a bloated beast, with over twenty tracks and at least as many features. Getting through many spins, two sides emerged, seemingly interlocked in one big project. As expected his prowess as a veteran is focused topic, further explored with more coherent raps on his status as an untouchable in the scene. Light Work stands out as an endearing track on his future. Laying out his plans to pave a path for his son to follow in his footsteps feels like a passing of the mic moment.
Between its topical songs a barrage of guest artists bring a helping variety of wild and overtly enthusiastic temperaments to the mic, often with the braggadocio street sharpness. Its a platform for him to give attention to other Grime artists who flair up with jagged flows and violent rhyme styles, vying for attention with typically biting, obnoxious bars. Its drenched in slang, deep accent emphasizing and catchy inflections. The track Starring is a keen example, bringing equally an obnoxious beat with its jabbing synths and gunshot lined drum loop alongside the features.
On the topic of instrumentals, the production is fine, Wiley has another arsenal of producers to load the album with variety in its typically crisp style with sharp and keen arrangements pulling a range of vibes, mostly leaning to the darker tone of the streets. Eskimo Dance stands out, on of many typically short three minute tracks but it burns through five or six, gritty beats rammed together. It's an attention grabber with absurd flows from another handful of guests, all jumping in with a sequence of short bars.
Its tracks like that and the aforementioned Light Work that make it a little disorienting in the long run as it swings back and forth between this showcase and Wiley's focused thought conveying verses with a few dips into the easier R&B territory. It certainly feels like two ideas have been mashed together but ultimately keeps things spicy and fresh with plenty of favorites to pick from the bunch. Ive read this was his last album, however Wiley has already put out another record since this, I may just give it a spin!
Favorite Tracks: Come Home, Eskimo Dance, Bars, Family, Bruce Wayne, Starring, Light Work