It seems like all that a hip hop artist must do in order to gain acclaim these days is to talk about something besides bitches, cars and money. Labeled as one of the top 12 albums of 2003 by Spin magazine and winner of the prestigious Panasonic Mercury Music Prize, Dizzee Rascal’s Boy in da Corner has caught the attention of the press, as well as both hip hop and indie music aficionados. However, this album doesn’t take enough risks to make it the next big thing rather than just a flash in the pan.

This inventive 18-year-old was just one part of the 12-piece underground hip hop extravaganza Roll Deep, but recently branched out on his own to start a formidable solo career. Following in the vein of fellow London hip hopper The Streets, Rascal takes his subject matter to a deeper level discussing nonviolence and the cyclical nature of life on the streets. But the style and diction choices leave Rascal sounding more like a British Busta Rhymes with a simple drum and bass background.

While songs like “I Luv U” and “Fix Up, Look Sharp” break the stereotypical hip hop mold by incorporating more electronic and rock ‘n’ roll influences, the majority of the album falls into the deep cavern of musical mediocrity.
[Brenna Boyce said she wouldn’t ask to keep Evie but… she’s so damn cute! Aww, c’mon, Danny.]