Is the UK having an alternative rap renaissance?

Image: Ashbeck and El Londo, shot by Simon Wheatley for The Face

Podcast: Two UK rap experts join us to discuss the new movement of open-minded artists.

In the autumn issue of THE FACE, we published a story about Victory Lap – the London radio show broadcasting the young generation of leftfield rappers.

Although some of the artists associated with this movement have been dropping music for a few years now, it seems that in 2023, the scene is gaining momentum. When Dave and Central Cee joined a Victory Lap cypher to promote their hit single Sprinter back in May, they shone a light on some of London’s hungriest MCs.

For this week’s episode, our Music Director Davy Reed is joined by Victory Lap boss Joe McDermott and journalist and podcaster Yemi Abiade, who recently wrote about this wave in an article titled Alternative British Rap, Please Stand Forward. The trio discuss the strength of the underground scene and the art of the cypher, as well as the current state of UK drill and the slightly cringe-worthy​“chill rap” label.

Oh, and Joe also shares a review of his first time hanging out with FACE Editor Matthew Whitehouse (they went to an Eric Cantona gig). Listen below. And if you like what you hear, please subscribe.


HOST Matthew Whitehouse EXECUTIVE EDITOR Davy Reed EDITOR Hunter Charlton DIGITAL DIRECTOR Brooke McCord MUSIC Louis Culture

More like this

The best of THE FACE. Straight to your inbox. 

00:00 / 00:00