UK afro - thread for discussing MoStack, J-Hus, Kojo Funds, Abra Cadabra, Belly Squad, Yxng Bane etc

Message Bookmarked
Bookmark Removed

Kojo Funds & Abra Cadabra - Dun Talkin
MoStack - Block Popping
Belly Squad - Banana Remix
Yxng Bane ft. Kojo Funds - Fine Wine
MoStack ft. J Hus - Paranoid

I've been caning all these virtually daily for the last month or so, although most of them slipped out at the tail end of last year. Still, something's going on here, right?

I don't know much about most of these guys or how they fit in, but this seems to mark the tipping point where what's been going on in Ghana and Nigeria really filters through to wider UK rap (despite it being nearly two years since Dem Boy Paigon there's something of a purple patch going on right now). But it also feels distinct from other UK artists like Kwamz & Flava or Mazi Chukz in that they feel defineably London and aimed first and foremost at a UK audience. Way more screwfacy than that, but distinct from grime, like you get the sense that most of these guys would have been making standard road rap until recently and there's a load of that DNA in this sound as well. Anyway, where do I hear more of this?

Matt DC, Wednesday, 8 February 2017 19:24 (three years ago) link

j hus - dem boy paigon

flopson, Wednesday, 8 February 2017 19:31 (three years ago) link

I'm all for this thread. Dun Talking is dope.

human and working on getting beer (longneck), Wednesday, 8 February 2017 19:46 (three years ago) link

Might be my imagination but reasonably reliable bellweathers like Mista Silva and Sneakbo seem to got a bit more aggro of late as well.

Matt DC, Wednesday, 8 February 2017 19:57 (three years ago) link

Can we put this one in here? It's not very aggro but I like it.

Dave x J Hus - Samantha

human and working on getting beer (longneck), Wednesday, 8 February 2017 20:01 (three years ago) link

J Hus' 2017 wasn't quite on par with his 2016 but Friendly was really good:

human and working on getting beer (longneck), Wednesday, 8 February 2017 20:10 (three years ago) link

ehhhh 2016/2015 i mean

human and working on getting beer (longneck), Wednesday, 8 February 2017 20:10 (three years ago) link

Yeah I think we might have got to this point sooner had Hus not been, er, unavoidably detained for a chunk of last year.

Matt DC, Wednesday, 8 February 2017 20:27 (three years ago) link

top choices in the op missing addison lee, big tobz' controlla, my 9ine, and robbery

suggest bannon (||||||||), Wednesday, 8 February 2017 20:42 (three years ago) link

spotify's bash caviar pl an essential follow

suggest bannon (||||||||), Wednesday, 8 February 2017 20:43 (three years ago) link

I loved Dem Boy Paigon when it came out. Looking forward to delving into this thread.

Lennon, Elvis, Hendrix etc (dog latin), Thursday, 9 February 2017 08:39 (three years ago) link

Can't find any links for LottoBoyzz' No Don outside of Spotify so I'll just say it's the jam and drop this in here:

human and working on getting beer (longneck), Thursday, 9 February 2017 13:27 (three years ago) link

new mostack produced by ill blu

lex pretend, Friday, 10 February 2017 11:41 (three years ago) link

"Dun Talking" is pretty huge, love it

lex pretend, Friday, 10 February 2017 11:42 (three years ago) link

Iray Mvmt seem key to this scene

lex pretend, Friday, 10 February 2017 11:43 (three years ago) link

two weeks pass...

Abra Cadabra ft. Kush "Valentine"

breastcrawl, Saturday, 25 February 2017 16:33 (three years ago) link

J hus - did you see

||||||||, Thursday, 2 March 2017 22:34 (three years ago) link

you'd never know this instrumental was a massive pop song, it fits right in w yxng bane's whole sound

wish he had ditched the ed sheeran chorus all together tbh

oiocha, Tuesday, 7 March 2017 09:08 (three years ago) link

paolo, Wednesday, 15 March 2017 20:50 (three years ago) link

||||||||, Thursday, 16 March 2017 07:27 (three years ago) link

Kojo Funds 'Warning' is completely shameless, in a "are you really doing this? Oh my fucking god you made it the whole verse" kind of way. I actually have the admire the chutzpah of it:

Matt DC, Thursday, 16 March 2017 10:06 (three years ago) link

chorus of the year

||||||||, Thursday, 16 March 2017 11:38 (three years ago) link

Morbidly intrigued by what I'm going to hear when I click on that Keef link.

Matt DC, Thursday, 16 March 2017 11:45 (three years ago) link

kojo has previous for interpolation w my nines obv

||||||||, Thursday, 16 March 2017 12:18 (three years ago) link

the arabic connection

lex pretend, Thursday, 16 March 2017 12:24 (three years ago) link

(geko's...mixtape? album? lionheart is pretty solid)

lex pretend, Thursday, 16 March 2017 12:25 (three years ago) link

like this too

lex pretend, Thursday, 16 March 2017 12:34 (three years ago) link

"you alright yh?" is amazing

lex pretend, Thursday, 16 March 2017 12:41 (three years ago) link

Morbidly intrigued by what I'm going to hear when I click on that Keef link.

― Matt DC, Thursday, March 16, 2017 6:45 AM (seven hours ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

You should check it out, I think it's probably being under acknowledged in the Afro "trap" genre how much of the influence came from Chicago anyway, if u look at YouTube stats for who was watching keef videos New York & London were two of his biggest audiences

Listen to my homeboy Fantano (D-40), Thursday, 16 March 2017 19:40 (three years ago) link

paolo, Thursday, 16 March 2017 20:44 (three years ago) link

I enjoyed that more than any other Keef I've bothered to listen to, which admittedly isn't a huge amount. But yeah road rap has been channeling drill for years and UK drill is mostly boring, but all this is a further mutation from that and it's the afro element that really makes this stuff bounce.

Matt DC, Thursday, 16 March 2017 22:33 (three years ago) link

Dun D ft. Sneakbo & Kojo Funds - Badman Rmx:

Like there's obviously some Chicago in the mix but that's not what makes it exciting, and the rhythmic blueprint is completely different.

Matt DC, Thursday, 16 March 2017 22:47 (three years ago) link

i agree! that keef track is picking up on the same influences (afrobeats) IMO

Listen to my homeboy Fantano (D-40), Thursday, 16 March 2017 23:36 (three years ago) link

whats interesting to me is how they're both coming to nearly identical conclusions, like you could mix those tracks together & no one would blink (well...they're not in the right key so it wouldn't be completely effortless but im sure there are plenty of examples where that would work)

Listen to my homeboy Fantano (D-40), Thursday, 16 March 2017 23:37 (three years ago) link


lex pretend, Friday, 24 March 2017 13:00 (three years ago) link

paolo, Saturday, 25 March 2017 09:14 (three years ago) link

New Kojo

paolo, Sunday, 2 April 2017 22:31 (three years ago) link

So apparently Wizkid AND Ty Dolla are going to remix this. It's a banger already though.

Yung Fume - Watch Me Flex

human and working on getting beer (longneck), Tuesday, 4 April 2017 20:59 (three years ago) link

Btw, deej is correct about the strong Chicago connection. The go-to dj, Kenny Allstar, who has his own show on Radar Radio, is a huge drill fan.

human and working on getting beer (longneck), Tuesday, 4 April 2017 21:01 (three years ago) link

J Hus album out next month!

paolo, Saturday, 8 April 2017 10:02 (three years ago) link

three weeks pass...

I don't know what Ussy Ussy means :(

paolo, Friday, 5 May 2017 16:45 (three years ago) link

two weeks pass...

^ really digging ill blu's second act as producer of all these sick mostack songs

oiocha, Sunday, 21 May 2017 02:00 (three years ago) link

one month passes...

Not heard much in this scene that's grabbed my attention recently but this one's good

paolo, Wednesday, 21 June 2017 15:51 (three years ago) link

one month passes...

Is anyone making this type of music outside of That London apart from Lotto Boyzz? Is it big with the youngsters anywhere else in the UK? I'm in Scotland so I don't have a clue what's big with the kids in England

paolo, Sunday, 20 August 2017 13:27 (two years ago) link

Don't think this has been posted but it's one of my faves

paolo, Sunday, 20 August 2017 13:29 (two years ago) link

Maybe there's a burgeoning scene in Birmingham as well? Suspects it probably mirrors wider diasporic movement to some extent.

Given that Mostack went Top 20 with a mixtape and 'Bestie' is getting serious daytime Radio 1 play, I'm guessing that a few of these guys are going to be massive. Gonna go out on a limb and suggest it'll throw up a rapper with genuine international appeal as well, something that grime has never really managed.

Matt DC, Sunday, 20 August 2017 14:55 (two years ago) link

Isn't j hus already this? French Montana is remixing "do you see" lol

Listen to my homeboy Fantano (D-40), Sunday, 20 August 2017 18:56 (two years ago) link

I know that J Hus has been in the charts but I didn't know that Mostack had as well, so good for him. These guys are getting a lot of views on YouTube as well (more than most grime MCs). I'm assuming these are almost all coming from people in the UK

J Hus would have to be the guy most likely to be an international success at this point but if a grime artist can't do it then I don't see why he would. Hope I'm wrong though

paolo, Monday, 21 August 2017 11:39 (two years ago) link

Because grime sounds antithetical to popular American music but afrobeats codes generally to the American mainstream as dancehall-adjacent and this stuff is basically afrobeats

Listen to my homeboy Fantano (D-40), Monday, 21 August 2017 18:35 (two years ago) link

When I said "international" I didn't actually mean "American" but lol whatever. Guessing a lot of these guys could before too long head out to Nigeria or Ghana and start playing to big crowds. But the accents and slang are going to sound a lot less weird to a US market that's used to hearing Wizkid pop up all over the place. Additionally, attempts to fuse grime with other international rap genres have always been incredibly clunky but the barriers here are more porous, these guys could collaborate more freely while still making it sound natural.

Matt DC, Monday, 21 August 2017 18:48 (two years ago) link

Imagine Young Thug collaborating with Kojo and then imagine him working with Skepta and tell me which one sounds more likely to work.

Matt DC, Monday, 21 August 2017 18:50 (two years ago) link

four weeks pass...

I've no idea what's going on with US rap music tbh but yeah OK I guess it's closer to this stuff than grime

Yxng Bane does it again

Donae'o has a go at afro bashment. Turns out he's quite good at it

paolo, Tuesday, 19 September 2017 19:29 (two years ago) link

two months pass...

I'd like to hear more tracks that have a sort of moody downbeat vibe like this and Did You See, Rihanna etc. Having said that...

What a skanker! Making me feel all summery even though it's a chilly winter's night

paolo, Thursday, 30 November 2017 19:33 (two years ago) link

Also Yxng Bane and Not3s are up for the BBC Sound of 2018

(Yxng Bane >>> Not3s btw)

paolo, Thursday, 30 November 2017 19:36 (two years ago) link

For those compiling your year-end lists, this playlist includes all the available tracks on this thread, organized roughly chronologically in order of mention:

ILM's 2017 Rolling Afrotrap Thread Spotify Playlist

Chocolate-covered gummy bears? Not ruling those lil' guys out. (ulysses), Thursday, 30 November 2017 21:38 (two years ago) link

one month passes...

Do you really call this stuff afro trap? I thought it's 'Afro-Swing' rather?

ahomka ginger, Saturday, 13 January 2018 00:40 (two years ago) link

In all honesty I thought Afro Trap was coined by French rapper MHD. He has made quite a few tracks with that name:

Frederik B, Saturday, 13 January 2018 00:47 (two years ago) link

Windsor Davies, Saturday, 13 January 2018 00:50 (two years ago) link

I thought people were calling it afro bashment. Afro swing doesn't sound right to me for reasons I'm unsure of

paolo, Sunday, 14 January 2018 11:55 (two years ago) link

Some say bashment, some say swing. Afro B has attempted to brand it afrowave. Some call it other things. The afro part is the only constant.

human and working on getting beer (longneck), Sunday, 14 January 2018 15:17 (two years ago) link

I think Afro Swing was coined by Kojo Funds and his producer GA. But yeah, other people seem to talk about Afro Bashment. Some might call it UK Afrobeats (like the article below) but doesn't seem right to me.

Afro Trap to me is the sound that MHD is doing in France. The UK sound is quite different

ahomka ginger, Sunday, 14 January 2018 16:05 (two years ago) link

No one calls it afrotrap, it just seemed to make sense at the time. Afro bashment is a terrible name as well but what do you expect if people will outsource everything to the Spotify brand consultancy. I've just taken to saying UK afro.

Matt DC, Sunday, 14 January 2018 16:06 (two years ago) link

two weeks pass...

I don't really get the hype about Not3s but this one's big. All about Mabel though

The beat on this one is wavey as. Was not aware that One Acen was a producer

paolo, Friday, 2 February 2018 19:58 (two years ago) link

Loving the One Acen! “Fine Line” is nice too.

breastcrawl, Saturday, 3 February 2018 11:55 (two years ago) link

vice versa beat is sick, similar video game vibe as this mist one (great video too). you can tell all these producers grew up on the playstation 2 lol.

speaking of beats the hook and beat on this one is a monster

also can't believe octavian hasn't been mentioned here, this one got the drake cosign and everything. his delivery and voice is stunning, stopped me in my tracks the first time i heard it. hoping he goes far cause this is something else.

oiocha, Wednesday, 14 February 2018 20:09 (two years ago) link

not sure if this is the thread for it but the French-speaking world also has its own strain of afro-trap.

Kalash ft. Damso 'Mwaka Moon' is really popular in France I believe:

and speaking of Damso, a Congolese artist, his solo stuff is great too:

Badgers (dog latin), Friday, 16 February 2018 15:47 (two years ago) link

xp yeah Octavian's good. He's one of those guys who's sort of on the borderline between rap and Afrobashment

paolo, Saturday, 17 February 2018 17:43 (two years ago) link

two months pass...

Couple of the drill lads getting in on the action

paolo, Monday, 30 April 2018 20:33 (two years ago) link

two weeks pass...

Lady Leshurr also getting in on the action with this absolute belter

I heard a tune in this sort of style in a shop a few weeks ago, sort of a slowed down 110ish UK funky style beat with a hook that went something like 'you don't love me nah nah nah', singer sounded a bit like Mabel, anyone have any idea what this might be?

paolo, Saturday, 19 May 2018 10:57 (two years ago) link

Not a fan of that Lady Leshurr track, I know she can't carry on doing the zing machine thing forever but that just sands all her personality away.

I edited the thread title a while back but I'm glad afroswing is the term that's caught on. The whole sound feels much more about good vibes and less about dudes looking moody in estate stairwells than it did 18 months ago but pop ubiquity will do that I suppose.

Matt DC, Saturday, 19 May 2018 11:14 (two years ago) link

meant to post this a few weeks ago, when i went to see Yemi Alade at her first UK gig. It was the middle of the Windrush shit, and, while the whole gig was really great, this had the hairs on the back of my neck standing up:

Fizzles, Monday, 21 May 2018 19:58 (two years ago) link

three months pass...
two weeks pass...

Dele Alli though :(

paolo, Saturday, 15 September 2018 09:15 (one year ago) link

two weeks pass...

this stuff has largely passed me by but the kojo funds album is a lot of fun eh?

ogmor, Sunday, 30 September 2018 11:36 (one year ago) link

thanks for the heads up, i hadn't realised it was out

very enjoyable

ufo, Sunday, 30 September 2018 13:49 (one year ago) link

Listened to the opening stretch of it earlier today and it was both hugely enjoyable and completely shameless.

The opening track reminded me, weirdly, of Soon by My Bloody Valentine in a way that was I'm sure entirely unintentional, and within a few songs he's dropping Craig David and Snow references.

Matt DC, Sunday, 30 September 2018 14:05 (one year ago) link

three months pass...

This is more dancehall than afro bashment tbf but who know Idris Elba could rap? Man a big DJ ask Meghan and Harry

Jae5 is the best producer in UK urban music right now

paolo, Tuesday, 22 January 2019 18:28 (one year ago) link

five months pass...

Somehow forgot this thread existed, until paolo reminded me in the UK Rap/Grime thread.

Posting this as much for Latifah’s verse in Dutch as anything:

Geko ft. Maleek Berry & Latifah • Hey Mama

breastcrawl, Saturday, 13 July 2019 10:49 (one year ago) link

I've been really enjoying the route one lasciviousness of the Mostack album lately.

Matt DC, Saturday, 13 July 2019 10:58 (one year ago) link

Haven’t heard the album, but “Stinking Rich” with J Hus and Dave is great:

breastcrawl, Saturday, 13 July 2019 11:30 (one year ago) link


— 67*6GOD* (@Scribz6ix7even) July 11, 2019

god knows if it belongs here but was listening to this last night and thought it banged.

calzino, Sunday, 14 July 2019 08:09 (one year ago) link

That's drill. I'm happy that another ilxor is posting drill videos tbh. Big track by the way

paolo, Sunday, 14 July 2019 10:18 (one year ago) link

I've been really enjoying the route one lasciviousness of the Mostack album lately.

― Matt DC, Saturday, July 13, 2019 6:58 AM (yesterday) bookmarkflaglink

yeah this is really *fun* even when he's making dumb smutty jokes, he's v winning and the production is consistently pleasurable

rob, Sunday, 14 July 2019 14:52 (one year ago) link


what's some other good UK drill stuff? If you don't mind an me asking paolo?

calzino, Sunday, 14 July 2019 21:26 (one year ago) link

an lol fuck knows where my typing is at these days!

calzino, Sunday, 14 July 2019 21:27 (one year ago) link

Check the grime and UK rap threads, which I spam up with drill videos on a regular basis

Digga D
Headie One
K Trap
Unknown T (not really drill any more tbh)
Skengdo and AM (not as good as they used to be)
67 (same)
Harlem Spartans/Loski (same)
Nito NB
OFB (esp Bando Kay, Double Lz, SJ)
Sav and S1
Zone 2 (not released much lately cos they're all in prison)
T1 from Silwood Nation

paolo, Monday, 15 July 2019 11:05 (one year ago) link

three weeks pass...

Here for it:
Kojo Funds ft. Wizkid • I Like

breastcrawl, Friday, 9 August 2019 20:27 (one year ago) link

Wiley's making pop music again. It's OK I guess

paolo, Tuesday, 13 August 2019 09:39 (eleven months ago) link

Wiley is also on the new Kida Kudz, which is more or less a follow-up to Ms Banks’s “Snack” (posted in The Other Thread), again produced by GuiltyBeatz:
Kida Kudz ft. Wiley • Bounce

breastcrawl, Tuesday, 13 August 2019 14:27 (eleven months ago) link

eleven months pass...

“The Official UK Afrobeats Top 20 will be announced on BBC Radio 1Xtra on Sunday.“

just sayin, Tuesday, 21 July 2020 08:33 (two weeks ago) link

Good development, although it’s too bad they stuck with the Afrobeats tag instead of Afropop. Curious as to what they are going to include on this chart, and what will be excluded, both for UK tracks and actual African tracks.

I started listening to the NSG album but didn’t get all that far. I found the vocal interplay on some of the new tracks a bit messy and unfocussed, not like I remembered from the singles at all, they were real... bops. I should try again, maybe it was the wrong day.

Loved this one tho:

Bonus point for being produced by Dutchman Yung Felix.

No mean feat. DaBaby (breastcrawl), Tuesday, 21 July 2020 11:39 (two weeks ago) link

Here’s that first UK Afrobeats top 20:

5 UK tracks (6 if I include Juls), of which 3 are in the top 5, one French track, the rest are Nigerian (most of them) or Ghanaian.

Looks like they’re sticking with the UK definition of Afrobeats as music of West African origin (whereas in the US it appears to be a catch-all term for all African pop music), since they chose not to include Master KG’s “Jerusalema”, not even in the remix version with Burna, even though it would have undoubtedly qualified sales-wise.

So time to post another NSG track, because “Grandad” is the number one:

No mean feat. DaBaby (breastcrawl), Tuesday, 28 July 2020 06:50 (one week ago) link

surprised there's no chat about this tiktok smash w/ its many remixes (unless I'm looking in the wrong place) - seems right up ilm's alley

rumpy riser (ogmor), Monday, 3 August 2020 11:05 (one week ago) link

i'm pretty out of touch with tiktok hits but i'm glad something as good as that is one

ufo, Monday, 3 August 2020 11:57 (one week ago) link

You must be logged in to post. Please either login here, or if you are not registered, you may register here.