Wiley (2 stars)


Playtime is Over (Big Dada)


Long hailed as the progenitor of grime, since his 2004 debut Wiley has struggled to match his credibility with commercial success. Sadly, lacking any degree of quality control, his third album sees only more underachievement. While others can simultaneously dabble in the gossip of the Grime scene and appeal to an uninitiated mainstream, Wiley seems unable to move into less provincial territory. This is typified by ‘Gangsters’, one the best songs, which still references his split with Dizzee Rascal over four years ago. His signature ‘eski beat’ production, as always, is innovative but Wiley’s limitations as an MC are laid bare on far too many filler tracks. One more like this and his reputation as a mildly diverting footnote will become set in stone.

(Miles Johnson)

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