Yorkshire. Home to many of God’s greatest gifts. Great tea. Amazing puddings…and now, some of the freshest bars that could have come out of the UK. It goes without saying that if we’re talking about ‘up North’ and hip hop, the first name that should be mentioned is Yorkshire based rap crew Verbal Contact, whose stunning debut album ‘Blue in the Face’ showcased this group’s penchant for intricate word play and smooth controlled flows back in December.
As part of the promotion for their album, I managed to get my hands on the EP ‘Chopped and Blued’, which contains remixes of the album’s tracks by some of the UK’s hottest up and coming producers including Northern Lights, Wizard and Nutty P. Here each producer gets space to re-work the track with their own trademark style which includes this reviewer’s personal favourite remix of ‘Get Stoned’ by Northern Lights. With its classic vocal samples and heavy bass/snare patterns, it sounds more like New York circa ’94 than Yorkshire 2013.
Other stand outs include Wizard’s contemporary mix for ‘Down for the Cause’, where trippy synth turns the track into a club banger and Distinction’s version of ‘Get Got’ which sounds like a slice of pristine UK dubstep pie. Until Verbal Contact release a new album, this should definitely whet any UK hip hop fan’s appetite.