I have not really been following Lethal And Destruction
since their So What
CD dropped, but by all reports they need to be checked out. Destruction
is the DJ / producer and he has a bit of a pedigree battling his way to the DMC finals and getting production credits on Adam F’s Kaos album.
Lethal (aka Harry Shotta) has the lyrical skills to match his name and has been dubbed one Rodney P’s favourite MCs at the moment. So far the duo have released their Weapons Of Mass Destruction mix CD and three singles which have helped establish their names.
Now those singles are combined and added to for their debut LP entitled The Journey which they are putting out on their own Bleak House Records label.
The fourteen track LP gets going with The Journey Part 1 which is semi-accapella to begin with. A gentle piano backs Lethal before the drums and keyboard chords kick in. The instrumentation builds throughout the track which allows Lethal to drop his history and background in rhyme form, detailing in chronological form how he and Destruction got to where they are now.
01. The Journey Pt.1
02. So What
03. England I Know ft. Tor
04. The Energizer
05. Invincible ft. Skeme
06. The Performance ft. Skibadee & Tor
08. In The Army Now
09. Walk Like A Champion
10. All Weekend
12. Don Ah Don ft. Skeme & Laurie Sterling
13. Cradle To The Grave
14. The Journey Pt.2
Next up is one of the tracks which made the group – So What
. A major drum roll forms the intro before the harsher beat kicks in. A squashy sounding big beat is intermixed with the electric guitar from an old Electro track. The heavier vibe allows Lethal to be a touch more forceful in his vocal dissemination.
England I Know is a political track which touches on many of societies problems, drugs, the law, politicians etc. Tor is brought in to add her perspective to this track. The Energizer again goes back to the old school for its samples, but has a thoroughly modern grime type backing over which Lethal show some of his double time spitting skills.
The vibe changes radically for the piano opening of Invincible. Great strings are cut in for Lethal to let us know how it for him on a daily basis living in his ghetto. But the overall theme is positive as Skeme from Sterling Collat joins in the vocal duties. The Performance is a big track and features Skibadee who twists up his tongue as you know he can. Also on the track is Tor again.
Flash is a dancehall banger with its rapid fire kick drums. Lethal drops his tales of picking up gyal and trying to get their ‘gash’. In The Army Now slows things down for a moment, the production playing on the old 1812 Overture as Lethal, in a more gruff tone than I am used to from him, describes what it is like for a youngster with little direction to join the army and progress to going to war.
Destruction forms a complete banger for Walk Like A Champion. Lethal raps about how he has grown mentally and how he has matured, but at the end of the day he maybe needs to mature a bit more as he states that he would bring it to his enemies, but a bigger man would rise above that.
The vibe is mellowed out for Mary. Lethal describes the life of a girl whose parents initially looked after her well, but as their lives feel apart he explores how this affected the child in an intelligent and clearly thought out manner.
Proving that he can work wonders with the sample Destruction totally flips up a beat from Wild Style for an new track Don Ah Don which also brings in Skeme and Laurie Sterling. The pen-ultimate Cradle To The Grave is heralded with trumpets over which Lethal lets his bad mood show through in this hardcore brag rap bigging up his crew.
Just as it started the CD rounds off with Part 2 of the title track which adds to the personal story that Lethal started in the first track. Obviously personal, Lethal goes further back in time to his school days and in the chorus states that music has influenced his life in a big way.
Lethal has proved his amazing ability to fire out the words in rapid succession, but also his ability to cover topics and form coherent stories. Destruction has an immediately accessible style, but is also authentic and original and should go far.
Be sure to be on the look out for forthcoming LP releases from this Gravesend stable including The Ringleaders, Harry Shotta and Destruction’s Breaking Point Compilation.