Dagenham feller makes minor UK chart dent…
Martin Skidmore: UK hip hop, outside grime (which this doesn’t resemble, for me), has had a low profile lately, but this is pretty strong. He has a presence and muscle in his rapping, and the female vocal is sharp. The production has plenty going on, and sparkles attractively in parts. I can’t see him being a big star, but I quite like him.
Jonathan Bogart: Is it too soon for The Streets nostalgia? It is, isn’t it?
Alfred Soto: “Devlin = UK’s Eminem,” wrote one commenter for this song’s YouTube clip. Not even close: no danger, no Chris Kirkpatrck jokes. The backing track has a nails-on-chalkboard quality though.
Alex Ostroff: Imagine, for a moment, that rap-metal actually became a thing. In the UK. Grime-metal was always a possibility, I suppose – Dizzee’s first LP was claustrophobic and occasionally hit similar notes of despair and melodrama (see: “Brand New Day”). Dizzee’s darker moments were tempered, however, by gleeful chaos and a wicked sense of humour. Devlin’s self-seriousness rivals Chester Bennington’s, and the Linkin Park pianos and Evanescence chorus render “Brainwashed” equally laughable. “My name’s lodged up in your brain / just like a blade in an operation” is an overcomplicated way to say “Listening to this song makes me want to stab myself in the head.”
Hillary Brown: There’s something particularly grating about this song, which gets neither the main vocals nor the backing track right. Both manage to irritate (the former with an attitude of laziness despite their quick pace and the latter with tones that continually hit the ear wrong), and yet they also don’t seem to go together. If you’re going to be a flash in the pan, you can at least put together a decent tune!
Renato Pagnani: “My flow’s so tremendous.” Er, I hate to break it to you, but it’s not. At all. Your flow is bruised to hell from tripping over your lanky-ass legs every two bars.
David Raposa: By the sound of this flat-ass track, I’m guessing Devlin won’t care if folks remember his name for the wrong reasons.
Michaelangelo Matos: I didn’t like Inception in the theater, either.