2nd Class Citizenz – A New Day (Album Review)
In a decade where everything seems to be in a constant state of change, nostalgia seems more of a comfort than ever. There’s something spiritually nourishing about returning to the territory you’re familiar with, and establishing a new relationship with it. It’s been quite a time since we’ve heard from the lads in ‘2nd Class Citizenz’, and with everything happening in the world right now, their sardonic, cutting sensibilities are very much welcome.
It’s refreshing to see the 3-piece (consisting of MC’s Bobby Ball & Budge, alongside Producer Leeboi) back again. ‘A New Day’ marks the trios fourth release, following on from 2013’s ‘Not For The Faint-Hearted’, 2014’s ‘The Route of All Evil’ and 2015’s ‘Revolution Soldiers’.
What you’re getting here is 13 tracks, including the intro, making this a meaty slab of a comeback in an era where everyone seems content to just drop EP’s. 2CC always stood out for their production values, and it’s heartening to see the standard is as high as ever. As apt as the title ‘A New Day’ is, it’s also continuing the trend of things that made the outfit such a strong, under-appreciated force in south-coast UK hip hop.
You could easily be understood for asking if the six-year gap has resulted in the lads lapsing out of sync. We’re glad to say they’re every bit as on point as ever. The boombap sound is still intact, with Budge & Bobby still overflowing with carefully plotted lyrics.
‘Intro’ sees a spoken-word piece over an intense brooding re-tooling of Moonlight Sonata, elaborating that this is a resurgence for the trio. It’s Instantly followed up with the title track. ‘New Day’. Leeboi’s immaculate production continues to lay a solid foundation for Budge & Bobby, who flow with a manner that would be at home sitting in the High focus catalogue.
‘Every dog has it’s day’ is clearly inspired by current events, with a whole slew of clever couplets, and wordplay referencing were we’re at sociopolitically right now. ’Lynbottom’ gets nasty and visceral, but the hook is undeniably catchy, And ‘Changes’ isn’t short on intense attitude either. ‘Boombap’ is everything you’d expect.
The album ends on ‘Empty Promises’, and it’s a defiant, determined closer. It’s an exclamation mark. A statement about being done with hollow promises and other peoples negativity, and to take things into their own hands from here on out.
The tone of the album indicates we’re getting more from the lads in the future, and I’d hope so. It’s great to hear a vintage sound being carried forward with contemporary lyrics and modern production values.
Welcome back Lads. It’s good to have you back in our ears.