Stormzy
Gang Signs and Prayer


2.0
poor

Review

by Mort. CONTRIBUTOR (55 Reviews)
February 26th, 2017 | 91 replies


Release Date: 2017 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Songs of Praise: Roadman Edition

My problem with Gang Signs and Prayer is that there’s too many prayers and the few gang signs present lack oomph. For example, opener “First Things First” attempts to lay the groundwork for a bombastic debut LP, yet relies on a skeletal beat and Stormzy’s droll monotonous flow, making it a pretty lacklustre “first things first” statement of intent. The next track, “Cold”, would have been a much better opener; it bustles with relentless energy and swagger, presenting Stormzy as a charismatic young newcomer with a few things to prove. But sadly “Cold” is an exception. The rest of Gang Signs and Prayer sees Stormzy kill all momentum; we get treated to Songs of Praise: Roadman Edition as he prattles on about god in clichés (“Blinded by your grace” is a prime offender) over mellow gruel that his mum probably thinks is just really nice. These “prayers” bog down the record with inoffensive, mid-tempo, chill-out RnB that lacks any character due to its smooth velvet homogeneity. The worst part is that this seeps into the whole record; there’s little gritty wobbling bass to be found here nor grimes characteristic chippy persona, and with Wiley bowing out early this year to make space for new blood I thought this could be grime’s year; and I was looking to Stormzy to prove that.



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user ratings (63)
Chart.
2.9
good
other reviews of this album
BandanaGeorge (3)
Stormzy's debut is hit and miss, but when it does hit, it hits hard. An ambitious compilation of Gri...


Comments:Add a Comment 
Mort.
Contributing Reviewer
February 26th 2017


14242 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Q a lot of comments regarding how short this is



but yeah bad album

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romulanrancor
February 26th 2017


7418 Comments


better than reading a load of waffle, good review

Mort.
Contributing Reviewer
February 26th 2017


14242 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

ayyy one neg already keep em coming boys

DoofusWainwright
February 26th 2017


19991 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Short reviews are the future, pos

Mort.
Contributing Reviewer
February 26th 2017


14242 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

cheers doof and romulan



what are your fav tracks off this doof?

DoofusWainwright
February 26th 2017


19991 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Cold, Big for Your Boots, Rucksuck, Lay Me Bare

Mort.
Contributing Reviewer
February 26th 2017


14242 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Cold is the only track i really like



big for your boots aggs me

DoofusWainwright
February 26th 2017


19991 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Big For Your Boots sounds like prime Dizzee to me, like it a lot

zakalwe
February 26th 2017


27073 Comments


Pos'd it.

EphemeralEternity
February 26th 2017


3232 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

ye it sorta reads more like a protracted soundoff than a typical review but it's concise af and well written so it's a pos from me

DoofusWainwright
February 26th 2017


19991 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

'Lay Me Bare' will end up a top 20 tune of 2017 for me, guaranteed

anatelier
February 26th 2017


2614 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

airplane mode on my phone sometimes

Digging: Fontaines D.C. - Dogrel

Mort.
Contributing Reviewer
February 26th 2017


14242 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

u wot m8?

EphemeralEternity
February 26th 2017


3232 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

sif you like grime doof

DoofusWainwright
February 26th 2017


19991 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Mort it's a lyric from the album...sure you didn't switch this off before the end?



Grime emerged as a genre when I was about 23 years old and living in Brixton, so yeah I used to listen to a bit here and there, perfect music to walk around south London streets to.



Before then had a gf who liked the more grimy UK garage stuff like Oxide & Neutrino and So Solid Crew so really it didn't sound that far away from that, and before then I'd listen to a load of UK hip hop as that was my brother's big thing (he's worked with Ninja Tune a bit) and again it isn't thaaaaat far removed from that sort of thing. 'Countryman' by Skitz was one of my most played albums in 2001. Plus I ended up listening to a load of UK drum n bass while I was a student.



So it was logical I'd end up listening to some grime. It's basically just UK hip hop.

Mort.
Contributing Reviewer
February 26th 2017


14242 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

"Mort it's a lyric from the album...sure you didn't switch this off before the end?"





i dont even remember most lyrics from my favourite albums

EphemeralEternity
February 26th 2017


3232 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

fair enough haha it wasn't an inquisition I just didn't think it would hold much appeal to you but obviously you've listened to a fuck load more of it than i have in my 22 yrs.

NorwichScene
February 26th 2017


2832 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0 | Sound Off

Agreed with rating

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Mort.
Contributing Reviewer
February 26th 2017


14242 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

well thank you for agreeing

NorwichScene
February 26th 2017


2832 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0 | Sound Off

No problem Deano



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