‘Bridgeland Road’ tells the story of an unprovoked, racially motivated attack which acted as the catalyst to create this new powerful, harrowing and uplifting body of work.
“The Village Is On Fire” is a 12-track commentary on London in all its agony and glory. That is to say, a record which does not preach to its East London neighbourhood about its dangers and challenges, but which instead invites those surroundings to join a conversation.
This is what makes Guvna B special: he seeks an ever-closer relationship with the area he grew up in, even as it might sometimes cause him trauma. While most people flee the places – either emotional or physical – that have brought them the greatest pain, Guvna B composes his best work when he returns time and again to the site of suffering, refusing to let that setback define him. That desire and ability to find beauty in life’s ugliest phases is what sets him apart. In his latest work his craft has been honed to its highest level yet; it is a melting pot of the sounds of the city that raised him.
He takes no prisoners on ‘U Get Me’ featuring the Mercury Prize nominated Ghetts that further cements them both as grime purveyors. Feel-good vibes come in abundance especially on the soon to be summer anthem ‘Amplify’ where he integrates his Ghanaian heritage with the help of rising star and fellow Ghanaian DarkoVibes. He expresses his frustrations on the house infused ‘Everyone’s A Hypocrite’ whilst honouring where this all began, in the church with ‘Alright’ featuring gospel Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter Kierra Sheard.
In an often chaotic and transient world, where society is being ravaged by the cost of living crisis, Guvna B’s music enjoys a rare status: that of the anchor, the object that despite the turmoil around it will not shift. That status can only come after years of experience, dedication and sacrifice, but now Guvna B is finally here in his most accomplished form. This refinement and resilience is at the core of his very finest work to date: and, considering all of the compelling art that he has released prior to this album, that is cause for the greatest excitement.
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