We previously told you about Priceless‘ demo The Storm, that he was pushing a while back. He started off as a DJ and at about the age of 16 moved into making his own music. He is now 23 years old and hails from Croydon, South London. Since he dropped the demo he has been locked away and has produced his debut 15 track LP entitled The English Poet.
Almost everything you hear on the LP is the product of Priceless and you’ll find a set of well thought out lyrics with some political overtones delivered with feeling all over quite suitable and complementary hard hitting beats. There is very little bragging and when there are R’n’B touches as the female vocals on The Life I Lead, which are provided by the soulful Lizzie Stanley.
Patriotic Warfare starts off with a pisstake off the National Anthem before getting more hardcore with the message and delivery. Poet Laureate follows with a severely bumping beat and some sweet sounding cuts, just showing that Priceless maintains his skills on the decks. In this track Priceless draws pictures of his environs and how he fits into the street hierarchy bigging up himself, whilst also dwelling on the harsh realities he encounters.
Till Death Do Us Part starts off with a rather electronic sound set and progresses to be a dance floor filler to grind to as Priceless expresses his feelings for a love of his. The first single Get Out Of My Face is again designed for the dance floor with a big beat and well placed strings. Priceless gets busy letting us know not to mess with him at a club as there could be severe consequences.
The skits on the LP are not too overbearing and the Half Time Interval features a sketch in which Priceless plays the part of a comedian on stage in some working man’s club who is going down rather badly. This skit blends seamlessly into the next track, the largely instrumental Ben Brigadier & The Generals, a lovely, relaxing 7 minute long jazz influenced track, which is so mellow it is ideal to chill to.
My Address takes us back to the rocking beats and the true ideas of Hip Hop with samples from DJ Cheese and a commentary on the state of the world today with a call to the people of the UK to wake up and see what is happening in our society and the steps we are taking towards being a dictatorship. Towards the end to underline the point he list some evil criminals who he feels have been getting away with things that ordinary civilians detest.
Pale Rider is the most upbeat track on the LP with a sped up NT sample and a few club based lyrics dropped at quite a fast pace. His flows are tailored to the beat exactly with pauses and inflections that increase the liveness. The Storm features a minimal, but complex backing of guitar, breathy samples and piano for a modern sounding track driven by Priceless’ tricky delivery and a series of samples from the news collated together to form the choruses.
The final two tracks show the two opposite sides of the musical spectrum that Priceless can straddle. Hip Hop Music is an unforgiving homage to the music Priceless adores and has been shaped by, whereas Reminiscing brings back the tones of Lizzie Stanley for a much softer, delicate and vulnerable track.
The overall design and theme of the release is based around The English Gentleman from some of his lyrics to the ‘ye olde’ design of the cover. One issue is that I found some of the text a touch hard to read due to the font and the small size and also, the track numbers on the CD and the track listing on the CD go out of sych. Regardless this is a nice offering and if you get the chance you should give it a whirl.