If you’re going to copy, make sure you do it well. In a flagrant (let’s be kind) homage to DJ Mustard, Mickey Singh returns with the strong “Body” – of course, not literally, as when you see him in a sleeveless top, he’s quite a few reps away from his target. It’s got a good groove, a decent melody, a repetitive chorus and well chosen guests. The video is a bit on-the-nose, but it’s quite fascinating to see the evolution of Singh into his current form. It should certainly work pretty well in the club, which is the intended target. (Reviewed by Raman)
A track that stoked up a bit of “controversy” – which in 2011 basically means a few dozen people bickering on social media – found Skepta releasing “Asian Girl” featuring Chipmunk. Shizzio decided to make an unofficial remix, sandwich himself between the two (that sounds wrong) and release it. So whilst Shizzio is not officially endorsed, he claims to have had their blessing. Setting aside everything else, let us address the various aspects of this number: firstly, the beat is excellent, with a catchy-as-hell flute melody searing into your brain, and percussion/synths all working in harmony. The chorus, delivered by Chipmunk, is brash, cocky and suits the song perfectly. Now, we get to the verses. Up first is Skepta, who seems to have damaged his reputation beyond repair (thanks to his recent stint in pornography) – his verse is as corny as you’d expect, complete with off-point references, and his voice is completely lacking in charisma. Shizzio’s verse is average, not dissimilar to Skepta’s nonsense, actually. Only Chipmunk emerges with any credit, and you kind of wish he’d just done the whole song himself and put it on “Transition.” As for the more inflammatory aspects: well, Skepta is currently a joke figure who will (literally) do anything for fame; Shizzio makes an ill-advised reference to a Hindu deity; Asian fans complain, and some of the more hardcore element start their usual racist mud-slinging. So nothing new to report there, then.
Despite these kind of remixes not traditionally functioning brilliantly, the “Miracle (Asian Remix)” actually works bizarrely well. Whilst the chorus is pretty bare bones stuff not even worth dwelling on, the real stars are three of the four rappers, and an extremely competent beat (with Timbaland/Danja written all over it, but in a good way). Ayo kicks things off with a great introductory verse, attacking it with real verve and panache. Sam Khan follows and makes sure the level doesn’t drop, sounding incredibly relaxed and in control. Redzz is third up, and the start of his portion isn’t promising – but he ends up delivering something different and entirely welcome, as his mix of singing/rapping functions admirably. Unfortunately, The Truth – in the anchor position – drops the baton in the home straight with a particularly weak and simplistic sixteen not in keeping with the other trio (he’s usually better than this). As remixes go, however, this is most certainly an above average offering from Ayo.