Skepta’s new album, Ignorance is Bliss, is helping him shake up popular culture once again and as such, the grime veteran deserves to be the focal point of our Clickbait feature.
So here are 5 of Skepta’s most underrated tracks ever, including some of the oldest sounds to ever come from his laptop, reminiscent maybe even of some his newest work. You can’t beat the classics, which is a fitting clichè to use in regards to a man who released his Greatest Hits 12 years ago.
Nokia Charger Wire (Greatest Hits, 2007)
References don’t come more grimey than when something from Nokia is used and Skepta does so with the monstrous hook on this 2007 banger.
These MCs they try to disrespect my empire
So I hit the road to check a skeng supplier
Gimme a skeng that can start a fire
I want a skeng that’s long like my Nokia charger wire.
Expensive Talk (Community Payback, 2011)
Forget most underrated tracks, this might be Skepta’s most slept on project.
Community Payback was a free mixtape hosted by the ident king that is DJ Whoo Kid (WHOOOO KIIIIIIID). The fact that this isn’t on Spotify is one of the great tragedies of the music streaming era.
Expensive Talk kicked off the ‘tape and set the tone for the rest of it.
I tell these fake Gs come and test a mainstream MC and see if I don’t bust
I’ll come to your block and squeeze on your spot until I see puss
Are You Ready (Heavyweight Champion, 2009)
An album best heard with just one earphone, for the other one should be in the ear of your best mate in the back of your year 9 English class, Heavyweight Champion is vintage Skepta.
This is another album opener and features a verse that has been immortalised in a very legendary Grime Daily freestyle, filmed during the Too Many Man video shoot.
I’m gonna call this one Lord of the Mics, Part 3
And murder another 25 MCs
So dig me a larger grave
Spray my ting like aftershave *aftershave noise adlib*
Back Then (Unreleased, 2015)
Both musically and commercially, Skepta was in the form of his life in 2015 with his reinvented, rediscovered self taking Grime to America with all the integrity.
Inbetween dropping the likes of That’s Not Me, Shutdown and all of that, this collaboration with the legendary DJ Plastician emerged… and it slaps. That sample, that delivery.
Back then hoes didn’t want me
See me on the magazine cover and they’re all on me
The sun goes down, these skets wanna call on me
They can see that I make paper
My last mixtape was a game changer
And now I got these hoes on my iPhone talkin’ ’bout, “Hey stranger”
In The Country (Wiley Diss, 2009)
The OG Wiley diss.
The one where Skepta sung a Blur chorus. The one where the tune reloads itself after he anagrams Wiley’s name. The one where the whole beef was just album promo. One of the most underrated Skepta songs ever.
It’s all in your name fam I don’t need to try
I take away the W, I take away the Y
Fix up the other letters all you do is just lie *loud sirens*