U.K. grime has been in hip-hop headlines a lot recently—mainly for its co-signs from Drake and DONDA don, Kanye West. First to bat was Drizzy, referencing Skepta’s “That’s Not Me” lyrics in his verse on Weezy’s “Used To,” before shouting the Brit MC out in the credits page of If You’re Reading This, It’s Too Late.


Following that, Yeezy brought half the grime scene (Skepta included) on-stage for his epic debut of “All Day” at The Brits, which was quickly followed by a sold-out, grime-meets-rap gig in London with those very same riddim riders.

But what some U.S. rap fans might think is a new genre, really isn’t: grime music has been heavy in the underground for well over a decade now. MTV News already introduced you to some of the talents in this recent round-up, but here are a few basic pointers for inquiring rap minds that want to learn some more.


In The Beginning, Was The Grit

Rooted in U.K. garage and jungle, Jamaican dancehall and American hip-hop, grime grew from its base in East London (circa 2001) as a form of angst-ridden expression against the oppression facing these young voices on a daily basis. But it’s not all that deep: sonically—sharp-shooting flows, delivered on palettes of icy synths and guttural bass—it was new, exciting, full of bounce, and quickly garnered interest from fans and critics alike.

One of the crews many grime artists believe paved the way for them, and the genre in general, is U.K. garage outfit So Solid Crew. The platinum-selling gang from South London took UKG out of the champagne-clad nightclubs and dragged it up and down the hoods of the U.K., lacing “dark garage” backdrops with their (sometimes) unwelcoming tales. And, here we are today.


Pirate Radio Life

Deja Vu FM, Rinse FM, Flex FM, Freeze FM, Axe FM—these were some of the staple radio stations illegally held up in high-rise flats in and around London town. Rinse FM now has a full licence, as do some of the others, but online radio stations are the way forward right now; Radar Radio, Mode FM and NTS are currently keeping the airwaves fully loaded. And although it’s more of a visually-led franchise, Tim & Barry’s Don’t Watch That TV does its bit too, so hit them.


Crew Game Tight

Current crews lighting up sets/stages: Boy Better Know (above), The Square, StayFresh, Family Tree, OGz, Bloodline, Newham Generals, W.A.V.E Gang, Slew Dem, Invasion Alert. Retired crews you should know: N.A.S.T.Y Crew, Roll Deep, Ruff Sqwad, SLK, Boyz In Da Hood, Aftershock, Roadside Gs.


The Style World Can’t Get Enough

Grime’s been shutting down Fashion Week, long before the recent co-signs of Nasir Mazhar, Virgil Abloh, and Astrid Anderson: in the mid-00s, Parisian fashion designer Jean Charles De Castelbajac (or JCDC, as Slew Dem dubbed him) and London’s Cassette Playa ran the roads with their quirky, grime-inspired garms. To this day, their iconic contributions to the fold are held in high regard from all corners.


The Tastemakers Are Territorial

Over the years, the scene’s leading tastemakers have made sure mainstream media takes grime as serious as can be. Elijah & Skilliam, Logan Sama, Laura ‘Hyperfrank’ Brosnan, Chantelle Fiddy, Sian Anderson, myself and a select few others have dedicated entire careers to the growth of grime culture and, at this point, it’s more than just music—it truly is a way of life.


Clashing Is Part Of The Foundation

Clashing—or battle rapping, as it would be known in the States—is part of grime’s make-up. A way to inject some excitement into the scene, the pitting together of two bold MCs as they throw lyrical jabs at each other (suck your mum disses, and all), has almost become a pay-to-watch sport. Get your bars out or get weighed in! Lord Of The Mics is the leading platform for said sport, and it’s usually filmed over time for a full DVD release (yes, Drake’s a fan of it too). But peep this full report for all the recent goings-on in the land of war.

Platforms You Should Be Checking For Your Grime Fix

The Grime Report/SB.TV/Keepin It Grimy/GRM Daily/Complex U.K./Noisey U.K. / RWD


H/T: MTV News

Turning our Passion into a drive for JUMP, we hope to become one of the most recognised Electronic Music portal by 2020 in Asia. This project is a Not-for-profit one for all the Electronic Music enthusiasts. Help us grow JUMP by donating some Satoshis to us today. Bitcoin link as below: xxxx xxxxxxx xxxx xxxx (Wallet Address Coming Soon) 將我們的激情轉化為JUMP的推動力,我們希望到2020年成為亞洲最受認可的電子音樂門戶網站之一。這個項目是所有電子音樂愛好者的非盈利項目。幫助我們今天捐贈一些Satoshis給我們增加JUMP。比特幣鏈接如下: xxxx xxxxxxx xxxx xxxx(錢包地址即將推出) 私たちの情熱をJUMPのドライブに変え、2020年にはアジアで最も認知度の高いエレクトロニックミュージックポータルのひとつになりたいと考えています。このプロジェクトは、すべてのエレクトロニック・ミュージック愛好家のための非営利団体です。今日私たちにいくつかのSatoshisを寄付することによってJUMPを成長させてください。 Bitcoinリンクを以下に示します。 xxxx xxxxxxx xxxx xxxx(ウォレットアドレスが近日公開予定) - Nixson W. Kaneshiro(創設者) - Nixson W. Kaneshiro (Founder )