Review: Clavish – UK Rap’s Next Megastar Has Arrived in the Rap Game Awful

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2022 was an important year for Clavish. The North London-based rapper’s steady rise – since breaking free online in 2018 – has gained serious momentum thanks to a string of singles showcasing his collection of laid-back yet deadly flows. His refusal to give interviews only added to the intrigue of fans, while his increasingly polished production can be seen in the typically smooth visuals inherent in tracks like “Greece” and the smooth mic work that saw him nominated for the GRM Rating Awards in the Breakthrough of the Year category. .

His debut mixtape “Rap Game Awful” has been waiting for many fans for a long time. A cursory look at the tracklist shows that the 23-year-old musician has also been preparing for the release for some time. In the mixtape’s 28-song colossus, Clavish tinkers with an eclectic array of beats with crisp, sharp, candid verses, squeezing new songs between huge singles like the D-Block Europe collaboration ‘Rocket Science’ (charting at #9 ). UK last November) and the darkly seductive workout single ‘Public Figure’.

Diligently diving into various subgenres including road rap and trap, the Key the sequence comes from a measured pitch, which is rare among MS of his age. Another connecting thread of the tape is the feeling of darkness; his tales of prison, gangs and betrayal are given an extra edge by eerie but stripped-down instrumentals that offer the space of a bar key and echo the darkness of early heavy bands like 67 and the Harlem Spartans.

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Not surprisingly, the best moments in “Rap Game Terrible” are associated with the breakthrough singles that helped make Clavish famous. On “Greece,” he speaks powerfully about past crimes, spitting, “No, I don’t have amnesia / I haven’t forgotten what happened to G-wing / I don’t wanna hear ‘intent to deliver.’ Meanwhile, “NRF Freestyle” is full of energetic rhythms that dominate classic modern freestyle, such as Fredo’s “Independence Day”. Accordingly, the Londoner is one of several big names to appear on the mixtape. On “Monday to Sunday,” Fredo adds his smooth flow to a tribute to grind, vanity, and self-sacrifice built on a stark lyric: “You’d have committed the same crimes if you’d grown up the way we lived.”

The stellar nature of this debut mixtape is a testament to The Key’s status in the game. Ultimately, the project’s main flaw is that at 28 tracks, it’s too long. The impact of the strong stories told on this tape would have been enhanced by some ruthless editing, perhaps shortening the slightly tight middle section before “Mariah Carey,” a song driven by sliding pads and haunting chorus samples.

However, a strong sense of emotion resonated “Rap Game Terrible” makes the mixtape so memorable; the keyboard tells its story against a background of deep subs, creepy synth melodies and a dark ambience that allow her beats to pierce with real poignancy. If he learns to improve his work a little, then there is no reason why he cannot achieve the level of fame that he is projected to achieve.


  • Release date: January 13
  • Recording studio: Polydorus
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