Thursday, 29 August 2019

Record Review - Haynesy Dope Beat Biz Volume 1

Haynesy aka DJ Cue Tips, returns with a fully-fledged album with help from some stalwarts of the UK rap scene.
At first glance one look at the tracklisting makes you involuntarily rub your eyes and do a double take. The calibre of artists on the cover seems like a wishlist rather than those on an already completed project as this actually is. It reads like a who’s who of current UK rap with artists such as Whirlwind D, Blade and Chrome.
Did I say Blade?
Yes, the underground master of the British scene is included here and seems well at home. This is not an old cast-off vocal that’s been hanging around on a floppy disk from 1995 either - it’s all new.
The content on this album is fresh in all senses of the word. Production is taken care of by the boom-bap brother himself, Haynesy in this follow-up to his Hip Hop Advocate debut from last summer.
There is a strong return from Scorzayzee (who was ever-present on the previous collection), taking up a quarter of the album beating fellow HHA alumni Dweller, who comes correct with a couple of cuts himself.
The production is really quite strong with nice slappy snares and deep, punching basslines. The fact that Haynesy is happy to use from familiar sources gives the album a real feeling of intimacy. You don’t have to be a nerdy trainspotter to recognise some of the audio steals and this makes it rewarding when you place where you’ve heard the music before.

What I noticed upon my first listen through of the album was that there is a solid pattern that emerges. Each track follows a simple formula; scratch intro, verse, scratch chorus, verse, scratch outro. And Haynesy has employed the turntable talents of South Coast maestro of the mix, JabbaThaCut, to keep this important element omnipresent. Jabs scratches everything that isn’t nailed down in the cut. In fact he even cuts up Chrome in the last bars of his own track, Start The Panic. It’s like he can hardly wait for Norwich’s boy wonder to finish spitting before he mashes up the place with Chrome’s own vocals.
The overall tone of the album is mainly positive vibes which are indeed helped by the upbeat production. The scorching sun outside my window whilst I listen to this really does help to elevate the experience, it has to be said. Certainly it would not sound out of place at a BBQ either.

In hindsight I would loved to have seen a DJ track purely to show off Jabba’s talents.
Also to offset the largely vocal volume of the album, an instrumental cut might have been a nice idea to break up the flow midway through perhaps. Haynesy shows he is more than capable of delivering a killer soundscape and a chance to spotlight his undisturbed beats would be more than welcome.

So who is this collection of tunes aimed at? If you’re reading this then you are more than likely the target audience. Whilst it would be fantastic to get a new, younger crowd on board I think it’s pretty unlikely as this type of hip-hop would sound as alien to them as most modern day stuff does to our own ears. Unless you’ve been feeding your kids a regular diet of the realness then it’ll be mostly down to us dad-aged, balding, waistline-expanding, sofa-enthusiasts who will be heading to Bandcamp to procure this album.

With nine different artists across 13 tracks there is guaranteed to be something for everyone here. You’ll soon be able to digitally download the album (from 06/09/2019) on Bandcamp ( and a vinyl release is also set to follow after this date.

Who’s on the album?

1 Put Me On - Geebag & Neek The Exotic
2 Trained Assassins - Scorzayzee
3 Back In The Day  - Suspekt
4 Use Your Head - Blade
5 Jungle - Dweller
6 Pioneerz - Scorzayzee
7 Pick It Up - ddubble
8 Tri Polar - Scorzayzee
9 These Days - Dweller
10 Now & Then - Whirlwind D
11 Start The Panic - Chrome
12 Evolution - Scorzayzee
13 W-E-G - Weg

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