This year, keep your ear on Lady Sanity, from the vibrant city of Birmingham – a place that seems to be particularly good at nurturing female MC’s. As well as festival favourite Lady Leshurr, the city’s also home to the intriguing Truemendous, and RoxXann and the sporadic but talented Rawality.
Back in 2011, much of UK hip hop’s lyrical content seemed to follow the same path of spinning tales of street violence and bitching about who was the hardest and who partied the hardest, with wearisomely incessant references to bitches and nigga’s from rappers of every gender and race. But not Lady Sanity. She was dropping freestyles about the riots and lamenting those who perpetuated the stereotype of feral hood youth and it sounded like a breath of clearer air. I think she was about 17 at the time and wise way beyond her years.
Lady Sanity may not have had the airplay or the plaudits given to her more famous peer Lady Leshurr, but over the last 3 years she’s been steadily honing her talent and building a reputation and a fan base. Early tracks on soundcloud don’t have much in the way of production quality but the ease of her delivery and melodic flow manages to make itself heard.
The first full length mixtape, Construction, is a better introduction (sounds like she finally got a decent mike to start with) to her sound. Grab the free downloads whilst you can. A number of stronger tracks give production credit to Abstract Soundz. He gives us head-nodding beats and crisp samples that allow plenty of room for her vocals. Listen to Dust with the haunting horn sample weaving through the track – it takes a certain kind of confidence to keep things sparse.
Towards the back end of 2015 things began to really move. If you’re local to Leeds you may have caught her at Selected in November – if you missed it, don’t make the same mistake if the chance arises – she won the crowd over. She’s also had air play on 6 Music and in late December she announced on Facebook that she’s got new management, and a new ep release (all produced by Abstract Soundz) in January.
If you’re getting wearied by hip hop that feels closer to grime and yearn to nod to a boom bap beat, if lyrical braggadocio is driving you mad and you just want to listen to some intelligent rhymes, Lady Sanity’s could just be the prescription.
Check out some off her work.
From 2013, the production is a little fuzzy but don’t let it put you off, the foundations of a great track are all here.
Fast forward a couple of years to more money in the studio and the vocals much higher in the mix, great production from Abstract Soundz.
My personal favourite from the Construction mixtape (this track made it onto Rhyme and Reason Episode 3: Homegrown available on my mixcloud if you missed it)
Words by Vicky T Follow @vixx24
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and download her (free) EP when it drops