TOO BIG TO FAIL (ROYOS, 8TRED DA GR8 & MX)

RELEASED 13TH NOVEMBER 2020

Favourite track: Pink Moscato & Mimosa

There is so much talent in this album. Every track offers something different and the production is excellent.

As someone who is always on the look out for new UK-based artists I was keen to check out a recent collaboration between three South-East London rappers who go by the names of ROYOS, 8TRED DA GR8 and MX with their 7-track album Too BIG To Fail released only last week. The first thing to notice is the cover artwork of purple/pink/blue colours layered on what appears to be some sort of crinkled texture. The colours reflect (to me at least) a sense of passion, ambience and nightlife and I have to wonder if this will be presented in the lyrics too.

Image credit: Twitter

The first track ‘Metropolis.’ opens with 80s-style synths and warped waves, then rap and then a subtle Hip-Hop drum beat that has echoes of Tyler, The Creator. The flow is steady and strong as the lyrics explore the truths about the system and the future, ending with a gun-shot sound at the end and a repeated audio “we make the message acceptable”. It’s already set the tone of this album to be a social commentary as well as art which is something Rap, as a genre, tends to do best. ‘Easy Money’ begins with a delicate, magical, light piano sound featuring a quiet hi-hat soon accompanied by a harder beat and raw synths to give it that depth. It’s strange how whilst it sounds complicated, it is not chaotic. It’s all produced with great timing and interesting layers and yet the rap is still given the limelight.

Semi-muted synth chords start ‘Pink Moscato & Mimosa’ to really create that ambient feel then met by the bass, sci-fi higher synths and a catchy chorus. The rap really has that chill RnB sound with the background vocal work complimenting it so well and making this such a listenable tune. I absolutely love this track – it’s structured brilliantly. DZD features on ‘Isoké’ which has this quirky, retro outer-space sound underneath a strong Hip-Hop beat. There’s a lot going on with this one but I like how it offers us something different. The string synths are cinematic and make for a great addition. ‘Indecisive (Hosted by JJ)’ opens with a female voice on the audio who introduces the rappers and New Vibes Radio to the scene. I absolutely love this track with that slow, sexy AF RnB feel to it. The cutting, distorted synth FX in the background gives it that edge. It’s got something romantic and melancholic about it with “let’s have the night of our lives” repeated here and there which provides it with a young and free spirit.

‘Why?’ has a sharp vocal introduction that reminds me of a US Trap/Hip-Hop sound, featuring both Jiggyfromthesouf and prple. The delivery and flow on this one is really good. Honestly, it could easily compete with the existing mainstream UK and US rap. I also like the echoing electric/dream guitar in the background under the beat and heavy bass. The chorus is catchy and it makes for another very listenable track. The female vocals here are a nice, complimentary element to this one offering that smoother sound, often found in RnB tracks. The final track ‘I’m Doing Alright I Guess’ is one about love and not being sure about it. Jiggyfromthesouf, DZD and prple all feature on this one too. I like the slow, chill instrumental backing here and the flow is typical of the UK rap scene when it comes to the more emotional tracks.

This one is perfect for a night drive or casual listening. Just put your headphones on so you can appreciate it all properly.