East London Hip Hop crew Black Britanyaa thrive on doing things differently and bring you “The Windrush Volume 2”, so called because Volume 1 was the actual Black migrants!
The Windrush Volume 2 pays tribute to the musical traditions and legacies of past UK pioneers in Black music. Starting with the innovative SS Windrush generations of Ska and Highlife to the sound system influences of Lovers Rock and through to the pioneering development of Jungle.
The release of the album bears historical significance as it coincides with the 60th anniversary of the SS Empire Windrush landing at Tilbury Docks. In a world of formulaic music, this conceptual album runs like an anthropology of Black British music, and the group guide you through that musical journey with social insight and personal honesty.
It boasts 10 quality tracks submerged in Hip-Hop with different sounds from around the world. From Peruvian pan pipes; to Spanish guitars and even 80’s British Pop which gives “The Windrush Volume 2” an eclectic feel.
For the lead single Aliens, Black Britanyaa cleverly rework Sting’s fabulous “Englishman in New York”, and root it firmly in the Black British experience. The song encapsulates Black Britanyaa as the second and third generation of migrants, forging a new identity that can contain their Britishness and Blackness.
The final track Libation is the ancient African ritual of pouring out of spirits to honour the ancestors and this ancient tradition is recreated in music. The song gives a moving account of a family’s struggles (including domestic violence) and pays homage to the hardship of the Windrush Generation who came in the 50’s and 60’s. With the unique vocals of UK living legend Omar, this song makes for a strong follow- up single.
The MCs show a full range of emotional capabilities as demonstrated on tracks like the dark and moody “Devil’s Peak” to the reluctant love ode of “Lonely Roads”. All of which gives the album an organic and rounded touch.
At a time when Hip-Hop has almost been strangled by the bling, this album is a refreshing tonic as it pushes the boundaries of Hip-Hop both musically and lyrically.