In what has been a blisteringly cold and dark month at times, there was a warming light coming from the music scene at the same time. October 2017 has been one of the best months for music in my opinion for a long time, so much so I’ve had to change this list about 10-15 times. I’ll start of this one with doing something out of the ordinary, giving a few honourable mentions.
Krept & Konan – 7 Days/7Nights
The return of the London duo saw 2 new projects from them drop on the same night. With plenty of new and elder content on both, it’s a versatile release with something for everyone.
Wu-Tang Clan – The Saga Continues
It says a lot about Wu-Tang that a project that is still pretty good isn’t considered anywhere near their best stuff. Whilst this album had good bars, production and all of that it just wasn’t the Wu near their best even in recent years.
Future & Young Thug – Super Slimey
Same with Wu-Tang, despite both production, flows and what not being good – these guys just weren’t at their best. Still definitely worth your time though as it is a legendary mixtape.
Overdoz – 2008
Probably the album I was closest to putting on the list, Overdoz. are as fun as hip hop gets. Go listen to the song Manifesto from this to get a real thought of them.
Da$H – Double Sided Vol. 4
Since it’s only 2 tracks long I decided to put that here. Take nothing away as the two tracks are still amazing, wait on LooseSkrew which will definitely be an album worth hearing.
IDK – IWASVERYBAD
Having followed his career for a while now I knew he was an experimental, talented rapper. I still didn’t expect this though, it was so good. The mixed array of talents he brings to the table for it is crazy, he’s definitely someone to watch out for. He’s got a plethora of talent littered across one track too – Pizza Shop Extended. He’s got the trap sensation Yung Gleesh, combining with the illest villain and in my eyes the greatest ever MF DOOM as well as none other than Del the Funky Homosapien. It’s as ridiculous as it sounds and packs such a punch, without a doubt one of the songs of the year.
AJ TRACEY – SECURE THE BAG!
It’s been a turbulent month for AJ Tracey. Despite his beef with Mic Righteous in the latter half, his EP was released to a warm welcome. AJ’s ability to flow like no one else obviously helps him stand out from the crowd and he’s able to ride the beat so cleanly that you can’t help but bob your head. Features from 67, JME and Denzel Curry help piece together the EP so masterfully and it’s even better than expected. Despite what preceded the release, this and his tour mean it’s been a good month for AJ from the Lane.
GIGGS – WAMP 2 DEM
One of, if not the best British mixtape in years. Wamp 2 Dem sees Giggs take over the game fully in a release that has nothing but bangers. I can’t get enough of this, Giggs’ distinct flow is on the same legendary status as D Double’s or Prez T’s, nobody can do it like Hollowman. Straight Lifestyle and Peligro showcase his bars amazingly, but it’s his ability to control and dominate a track that really gives him the Landlord title he’s claimed for a while now. 2 Chainz, Young Thug, Dave, Newham Generals – regardless of who it is, Giggs can outshine. The mixtape also reached number 2 on the UK album charts which is unprecedented for a free project, further adding to the legacy he’s created.
KING KRULE – THE OOZ
An ever-changing artist, King Krule brings something new with every album and The Ooz did not disappoint. A certain level of charisma and hype follows King Krule and he lives up to it here, his distinct singing voice adds an extra element to his music not many others can bring. From song writing to singing to producing he has it all and this release is further emphasis on the fact he’s becoming one of the best talents in Britain. Be sure to try and catch him when he tours late this month.
ANTWON –SUNNYVALE GARDENS
One third of the rap group Secret Circle (along with Wiki and Lil Ugly Mane), Antwon’s latest release flows together so well and his ear for beats that compliment his style is second to none. No matter what beat, he can ride it well and make it his own. Not many people can have so many diverse tracks and yet such a distinguishable style. What I Do is the standout, produced by Canadian Kaytranada, ‘Twon raps over a guitar and what sounds like a recorder in the hook, he’s got a knack for bars that fit an aesthetic he’s built perfectly… “In the Mitsubishi Uber she gon’ see me ball”. It’s more of an experimental project than previous works but still works well.
GUCCI MANE – MR DAVIS
After months of anticipation and even a postponement Guwop finally dropped Mr. Davis. Showing yet again Gucci really is on a roll since leaving penitentiary and doesn’t seem to be stopping anytime soon. His reputation means he can get anyone on a track and it shows on this album – ScHoolboy Q, A$AP Rocky, Big Sean just to name a few – no other artist could get them so easily on an album but Gucci is the man. Taking a deeper approach to the previous outputs, it’s more insightful but still glistening in gangster lyrics, go take a listen! Oh, he also announced a new album soon too proving he’s one of the hardest workers in music.
METRO BOOMIN, 21 SAVAGE & OFFSET – WITHOUT WARNING
If you haven’t already, you should consider Metro Boomin one of the greatest talents in not just hip hop, but music. To be able to consistently produce beats at such a high level, with such diversity and from such a young age, it takes a very special talent. Following on from Droptopwop and Perfect Timing earlier this year, he’s released another collaborative album this time with 21 Savage and Migos’ own Offset. The pairing have both tracks together and on their own, and both deliver with such graceful, distinguished flows which makes it one of the top pieces of the year. The originality and unique touch these 3 artists bring to the table mix so well artistically that you need to hear this.
SKRAPZ DIFFERENT CLOTH
Skrapz is back and it’s a pleasure to hear that he is. He sounds like he hasn’t lost a step and is still one of the most enjoyable rappers coming out of the UK. Since his One More Chance song I’ve been a fan and he’s not disappointed me yet – this album exceeds his prior work and shows his maturity as an artist despite his absence from the game recently. His music portrays him as such a G and it honestly is hard to believe he isn’t living what he raps about. One of the UK’s best for sure.
BIG KRIT – 4EVA IS A MIGHTY LONG TIME
One of the most underrated artists in the game Big KRIT just showed yet again why he should be held in the same regard as Kendrick and co right now. Consistently putting out solid projects, having meaningful songs and a Southern twang like no other, KRIT really is one of the greats right now. Storytelling ability and raw passion mixed together is a recipe for success. Perhaps my favourite is Drinking Sessions, an insight into his mind and what’s going in his life it really paints a vivid picture whilst letting him show just how special a talent he is, the song alone is worth checking the album.
RO RANSOM – MOMENTUM
I’ve waited for this project for so long. Ro Ransom has been on the cusp of blowing for so long and this mixtape collects all the crazy singles he’s put out in the past couple years and then some. See Me Fall, Doppelganger, Prettiest – and even more. This mixtape deserves so much attention, he’s making better music than what’s in the chart and radio as he continues to cement his name as one of the best around. His versatility and mystique add to his persona as he’s rightfully honed the name Mystery Boy.
What a month for music, hopefully it follows on again in November!
Words by Rohan Parmar.