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Virtual Trouser gets rapping

By culture editor DJ NRG Raver

Posted April 02, 2012
mike skinner of the streets
Too much brandy: Mike Skinner of the Streets examines some inner-city life. (Check bottom for credits)

Yo, J-Roc, get off the motherlovin' sofa 'cos Virtual Trouser's gonna fizzle its jizzle all over a skizzle. Or something.

Welcome again to Virtual Trouser, thanks to the Rake an Herald and such video-sharing websites as YouTube and Metacafe the cyber-tastic arm of Naked Trouser (NT), the world's finest alternative music night.

And this time we're fresher than double-fresh fresh as we take a whistle-stop tour of the world of alternative rap and hip-hop.

First off it's Saff London, home to Camberwell's finest, Rodney Smith aka Roots Manuva.

Check out Trouser classics Witness and Witness Dub plus Dreamy Days (both the original version and the MJ Cole remix for some enormous basslines) as well as his epic 10-minute collaboration with the Cinematic Orchestra, All Things to All Men.

Staying in London, we next pay a visit to JC001, the wild-eyed human beatbox who in 1993 was officially named the fastest rapper in the world (he even has a certificate to prove it).

Never Again is a big favourite, as is The Madman Mix of the same tune for a slice of quality oldskool house.

After that it's time for a few numbers from London-based Brummie Mike Skinner of the Streets with his mockney UK garage-rap.

Most of the tunes on his first album, Original Pirate Material, get a play on Trouser nights, in particular Has It Come to This?, The Irony of It All, Too Much Brandy, Geezers Need Excitement and Weak Become Heroes, with Blinded by the Lights off A Grand Don't Come for Free also a notable favourite with both the selectas and punters alike.

goldie looking chain on stage
Rap is more deadly than f--king kung fu: Goldie Lookin Chain take to the stage. (Check bottom for credits)

Then, for a bit of light relief, we head west to South Wales and the Goldie Lookin Chain crew for their humorous take on 'chav' culture delivered in the local Newport vernacular.

Again, most of the tracks off their Greatest Hits album get a play, especially Half Man Half Machine, Roller Disco, You Knows I Loves You and The Maggot.

Finally we cross the Atlantic and move to the other end of the seriousness spectrum to sample some high-energy 'truth rap' for some stinging denunciation of political corruption and crimes.

Among the most biting examples are The Storm by Nightwalker and The Cause of Death by Immortal Technique as well as I Don't Believe by Gemineye Of Conspirituality, Lies by Remo Conscious and 9/11 Inside Job by Roy Shivers.

So put your baseball cap on sideways, wave your hands around like they're Glock 17s and, until next time, Fight the Power!

And talking of fights, here's the video to Blinded by the Lights, followed by a smidgen of GLC and a dash of Roy Shivers; embedded, respectively, from the YouTube channels of futureshorts, fatsOldSkoolJams and sirjsk. Word.

The original version of this article first appeared in Point Blank Poznan. Cheers, Steg. I'm cooking kippers tonight if you want some.

See also Virtual Trouser drops out, posted 27/3/12.

Picture credits

Top and thumbnail: Illustration by Ignatius Rake using original images by Moses; and Parrot of Doom.

Bottom: Original image by prusakolep; rejigged by Ignatius Rake.

For licensing information click the above links.

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