Genius At Street Level

By Teigue Blokpoel

From the moment the first track ends many would have made assumptions
whether they either want to turn it off or to make themselves
comfortable and look forward to listening with great anticipation to
the remaining fourteen tracks. One decision would be an utter error of
judgement and the other would be rewarded with an audio illumination.
The Streets truly are their own namesake as front man Mike Skinner
hails from the streets of Birmingham in the United Kingdom however he
later moved to Brixton in London to pursue his own independent record
label.

Original Pirate Material, The Streets debut album, has you hooked
from the get go and before you know it your head is bobbing to the
hypnotic piano and classical loops seamlessly fused with chunky garage
beats all drawn together by Skinner?s raw relevant urban poetry.
Instead of lamenting about cars, chains and bad bitches The Streets
prefer to use the moral and emotional dilemmas that we all tend to
face on a daily basis and you don?t need to be a gangster or a
millionaire to relate to it.

The second track on the album, Has It Come to This? proved to be
somewhat of a breakthrough track for The Streets as it genuinely
established their name in the mind of the general public. This smashed
its way into the UK Top 20 in March 2001, confirming The Streets as a
household name amongst the British youth. The track Lets Push Things
Forward epitomises the philosophy of the album as a whole. While there
are various sounding tracks on the album, Lets Push Things Forward,
truly combines all varieties in one track fusing the funky upbeat
rifts with cheeky electronic tweaks that have you tapping your foot
throughout with your mind is reeled in by Skinner?s dry wit and
masterful flow, ?Just another show flip from your local city poet in
case you geezers don?t know it, let?s push things forward?.
Since the release of their debut album, Original Pirate Material, The
Streets have gone on to receive ample acclaim for their musical
contribution including, being nominated for best album, best urban
act, best breakthrough artist and best British male artist in the 2002
at the Brit Awards. It was also named in the top 5 albums of 2002 by
renowned British music magazine, NME.

However The Streets are anything but a flash in the pan as they have
gone on to release a further three albums, A Grand Don?t Come For
Free, The Hardest Way to Make an Easy Living and Everything Is
Borrowed all of which have been successes in their regard with a
potential new album in the works. Other keys tracks on the album
included It?s Too Late, Don?t Mug Yourself, Too Much Brandy and
Weak Become Heroes all of which reach the ordinary listener on a far
more real level dealing with good and bad times that we?ve all been
through. All in all Original Pirate Material is a refreshing slice of
funky urban garage that penetrates you with razor sharp witty lyrical
content that will have you coming back for more time and time again.
Do yourself a favour, buy this album.

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