Little Simz, ‘NO THANK YOU’ – Mic Cheque

Little Simz is each frank and brazen on her fifth studio album, a fierce affirmation of sifted artistry and generational expertise.

There are two ends to the discharge spectrum: world class artists that put out albums each 5 years, and world class artists that simply want a twelve-month breather. For Little Simz, she’s returning only a yr after her essential and business peak so far, Generally I May Be Introvert, an epic album that noticed a conventional rollout spanning 5 months. The surprising follow-up was introduced six days prior and launched on a Monday with no promotion, and serves as her first launch below Inflo’s Ceaselessly Dwelling Originals imprint. With all guidelines out the window and expectations excessive, the result can solely be supported by the belief that Simz’s created between her and her followers.

On NO THANK YOU, Little Simz has ten darts in hand and hits the bullseye each time, coming in late however scorching as a contender for rap album of the yr.

Images: Karolina Wielocha

Sonically, NO THANK YOU borrows a lot from her 2021 Mercury Prize-winning Generally I May Be Introvert. Although this time there’s a sharper fireplace in her stomach surrounding the prolonged tracks, symboling a cathartic expertise from an individual who’s bought shit to get off her chest. Simz not too long ago parted methods together with her supervisor of seven years, which impressed strains, “Why did I provide the keys to authorise shit on my behalf? / What did I anticipate from these residing the company life?”, on album opener “Angel”. If it wasn’t clear from the title, the album is right here to fiercely tackle doubtful situations, a side that separates NO THANK YOU from SIMBI, regardless of its manufacturing palette, and 2019’s GREY Space.

NO THANK YOU‘s second function is to point out she is completed with the thorns in her flowers. “No extra slept on discuss , no extra underrated discuss , pls & thanks”, she tweeted final yr again in April. For years, Simz has been categorized as an artist that’s acquired by a listener. Now that the breakthrough has arrived, conversations round her work have unfold to American media and past. “This ain’t music one overlooks”, she declares on “Sideways”, which speaks to her confidence within the materials, and the self-awareness to recognise she has improved with each mission.

If Inflo’s lush manufacturing satisfies the typical music listener, then Simz’s rapping will fulfill any avid rap fan. Little Simz exerts one of the best rapping of her profession on NO THANK YOU, flexing flows, punchlines and rhyme schemes, combusting on songs like “Coronary heart on Fireplace” and “Damaged”. It provides one other dynamic that separates it from final yr’s effort, which had sharp performances however targeted extra on crafting massive songs. Above all, it units a strong argument for being one of the best rapper not simply within the nation, however a candidate for probably the most in-form rapper in hip hop proper now.

The power to evoke emotion is one other peak of the album. Frequent collaborator and good friend Cleo Sol assists on the album’s tender highlights, “Angel” and “Who Even Cares”, whereas Kojo shines on the closing observe, “Management”. For a ten-track album, NO THANK YOU manages to keep up nimble selection that hones the brevity from Simz’s 2019 album and the daring features of her 2021 sensation.

NO THANK YOU confirms there isn’t a higher rap artist out the UK than Little Simz. As her profile grows, so does the music, a uncommon anomaly in an trade of snakes and ladders. Little Simz is rolling sixes and it’s ladders all the best way.

8.5 / 10

Greatest tracks: “Angel”, “Coronary heart on Fireplace”, “Silhouette”, “Management”, “X”, “Damaged”


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