Wretch has always been one of our most thoughtful, emotional MCs, but his fourth major label album is too comfortable in its introspection. Where Stormzy's Gang Signs & Prayer carefully balanced bangers and ballads, this is sluggish and solemn. Whitney-sampling Tell Me is clever, subtle, infuriatingly dull. Lyrically, His & Hers (Perspectives) offers an ambitious pair of dramatic monologues, with Wretch purveying both perspectives on an unspooling relationship; musically, it's as enjoyable as sitting between the warring couple on a plane.
With the increase of transatlantic collaborations, and the ease at which artists can hop to any part of the world to hook up with another talent, the British rap album is sounding less and less like it's a product of the UK alone. Often we're subject to a grime/rap hybrid which then blurs these lines and causes the uninformed media to label all black music as one genre. And while sometimes these hybrids are part of an organic process, and a part of the artist's DNA -- think Kano's 'Made in the Manor', for instance -- for the most part it's to capitalise on what's hot right now.