They’ve all verbally peppered the key ingredients of this stew of raw creatives producing something, someone, somewhere might call ‘UK hip-hop.’
By Dylan Robinson
Cult of the Damned are back with the second part of their asylum-seeking saga, reimagining the rawness only they can create.
They bring with them a plethora of dialects, accents and vernaculars wider than your dad’s waistline. Dropping eerily and cleverly on Friday 13th April, it continued the legacy of a collaboration of artists that could potentially define a scene.
Part one of Cult of the Damned, ‘Cult of the Damned’, has boasted over 500,000 views on Youtube for a while now, and while some members have taken their solo careers further, they’ve all stayed somewhat the same… not that you can label this the same as anything.
It’s fair to say Part Deux has been highly anticipated. Nearly 3 years had passed, then out of nowhere, a new release dropped with a scrumptious one-take video from AboveGround, artists that have been there since its birth, some just months, all on an impeccable Zircon/Bisk beat to leave fans drooling.
This song does need a special mention. On a level with the tune which unearthed this underbelly of a scene harshly slept on in recent years, it paints a ‘Civilised’ group of artists just passing around the mic. The complexion and assortment of flows and vocals just make for an absolute classic. Big up Bad Taste Records too, best fetch Trell, Sniff.
Lee says it as it is in Coffee; “we make that type of music that you can’t find.” On a tune so majestic in its approach, Milkavelli brings beautiful euphoric wordplay to a mellow, chilled, clean Zircon production. Shakes’ delivery is as poignant as ever. Throughout this album, he is more appreciated than I give him credit for – he’s been there since day and always had something funny to say.
As for the rest of the album, between primarily Reklews, Zygote, Zircon and of course Lee Scott, the beats are original but allow for the vastity of flows on show here. It feels like each artist is trying to better the previous one, be it through hilarious imagery, ironic oxymorons, a devilish control of the mic, or just plain arrogant hedonism and an angry accent, these guys will make you listen.
Salar and Grubb kill it. Everyone kills it, but Salar’s been teasing us with a solo album, and listening to ‘Connect 4’ and ‘Never No’, not to mention the way he completely repaints ‘Saltwater’ (credit to Zircon on that one) has got me pleading guilty to admiring his abilities – his new solo single ‘Demigod Complex’ has just dropped on Youtube. Also, it’s just good to see Grubb still writing timeless quotes like “I be smoking 4 20’s at 4.20 on 4/20.” And then there’s Barebase; you’ll quickly warm to his catchy hooks and fire delivery like a melting marshmallow.
The original Cult have recruited well. As Tony Broke rolls back the years, Black Josh pulls them back the other way. They’ve all verbally peppered the key ingredients of this stew of raw creatives producing something, someone, somewhere might call ‘UK hip-hop.’
This group have created a scene, but as Milk says in ‘Never No’ – “If you don’t know now you’ll never know.”