Has UK Hip Hop Lost Its British Identity?


A worthy debate from DJ Snips, Teef, Miss LaLa and more, who fire up the well-trodden grime-versus-hip hop debate and highlight that the former has been on the decline. It's tough to pin down the exact tipping point, but Dizzee's 2008 chart hit Dance Wiv Me is certainly culpable. As is Wiley's Wearing My Rolex. A year later and Tinchy Stryder was regularly storming the top ten. A year after that and even washed-up Roll Deep members were cashing in. And once a genre's pioneers start vying for commercial success and tailoring their sound to fit, you need new names to fill the breach. But that's presuming people are still interested by that stage - and in grime's case, they're just not. It had a good five or six-year run then unfortunately imploded after its foundations evaporated almost overnight, in a bid to conquer the charts. It will never excite or cover as much ground as it has done already.

Has UK hip hop lost its British identity? It depends who you're asking and where you're looking. If the recent trend towards lifting rising producer Lex Luger's sound is anything to go by, there's definitely a strong case for it suffering a personality crisis. Let's just hope our accents don't start slipping too.