Saturday, 17 March 2012

LifeScarz: Northamptonshire's rising rap general

Richard "LifeScarz" Wainwright has been suffering from a severe case of split personality disorder for some time now. On one side he seems to think he's a deep dirty underground producer called Dirtboy Musik, making some of the filthiest beats around N-Town. On the other hand he's somehow got it into his head that he is a bad boy MC, going in as hard as he possibly can and having no mercy for those who fail to meet his awesome level.

I am of course joking, LifeScarz is a multi-talented lover of all things hip-hop who dropped a hot Stardust EP in 2006 that got snatched up by Kiss FM and the awesome Tricksta from UK Runnings. Since then he's featured on mixtapes by Papoose, Skriblah DanGogh and worked with Farma G from Task Force. So you can probably tell from that concise biography that his debut album has been a highly anticipated thing.
It's called Rise of the General, it's out now and it features help from Gemini and his Beat Exporterz crew who are just on another level on production from most of the rest of the county as well as local SRE legends Ill Murk and Kaoric & Dizmak aka The Council Kids, Kreaps from G13 (surprisingly not Kris Kurb though completing that terrible trio) and the madly skilled Ceasar who, Northants rap fans, if he isn't fresh on your lips now he certainly will be come the end of the year.

The tape in its entirety is a 29-track mix of challenging social/political commentary, shouting out some of the best Northampton talent and some very personal stories from Mic Terror's life (Scarz of Life is almost too honest). Hammtun's heaviest hip-hop at the moment. A Very Ancient War was an urban anthem for me when I heard it last year and with LifeScarz and Ceasar collaborating on two of the songs you just can't put a foot wrong. However the stand out tune for me is Hatersville which, oddly, sounds a lot like one of my favourite ever singles Bat Out Of Hell by Meatloaf. Tuuuuune!!!

It's LPs like this that make me love coming from the Midlands. There are so many MCs out there who just imitate exactly what's happenening in London with zero consideration, but people like LifeScarz, like The Organised Rhyme Family, like Ceasar outright refuse and take the scene to new, exciting places that give us some amazing music to listen to. Nearly 30 songs is pretty long even in mixtape terms so I appreciate you might not have time for the whole thing but listen to whatever you can cos this is badd (and by that I mean really, really good - yeah, I really shouldn't even try using slang).

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