The Streets : Has It Come To This?

A major talent has arrived...

It sounds like a very bad idea: a 22-year-old white Brummie called Mike rapping over his own homemade garage under the nom de plume of The Streets. The 2 Step Brian Harvey, has it really come to [I]this[/I]?

But ‘Has It Come To This?’ is not only the most original, lyrical British rap in memory, it also (alongside So Solid Crew) charts an evolutionary route for UK garage. ‘Has It Come To This?’ is the first garage record to be made about those who buy the records, rather than about those who make them.

It is not about being bling bling or VIP in Napa. It is about getting stoned playing Playstation, about scoring drugs, about being menaced in kebab shops, about hanging round on corners looking for better, about new trainers and breaking windows, about “sex, drugs and on the dole”. It is truly, as Mike Skinner intones repeatedly over the gush of dizzy garage, “original pirate material”. A major talent has arrived.

Ted Kessler