Headie One & Fred again..'s 'GANG' Is a Deep-Seated Tour De Force

Recruiting FKA Twigs, Jamie xx, Sampha, and more, the drill artist cements his artistic legacy.

Music
3,690 Hypes 2 Comments

Tottenham-native Headie One stunned last year with his eclectic Music x Road mixtape, aptly solidifying his place as one of London’s auspicious visionaries. Today he continues to adapt, expand, and reforge himself alongside BRIT Award-winning producer Fred again.. with GANG, a riotous 8-track offering that sees the controversial drill artist embracing his tumultuous past.

Boldly diving into many of the introspective themes he explored on Music x Road, GANG is far more rooted in the experimental, dripping with melancholic underpinnings that remain an obvious reflection of the road he’s trudged in order to get to where he now stands. The sheer fact that the project features the likes of Jamie xx, FKA Twigs, slowthai, Octavian, and Sampha reflects that he’s moving down a refined artistic path.

On lead track “Told,” Headie introduces listeners to much of the tape’s premise on gang mentality: “Family first, that’s the code you know/That’s what I was told, you know” he utters over a throbbing backdrop. It’s here that Headie and Fred make clear that GANG isn’t your everyday drill or grime record.

On title track “GANG” and the Jamie xx-featuring “Smoke,” Headie and Fred’s love for local underground dance flavor comes full-frontal. Both of these feel heavily reflective of UK’s rich garage and electronica scenes, with the former seeing Headie’s vocals processed to sound as if staggeringly-glitched. On the unfeigned “Judge Me,” which features swooning songstress FKA Twigs, Headie delivers an anthemic take on self-love, toiling with contrasting inner thoughts as he shares “I was broke and I loved myself.” This intimate display is furthered on “Know Me” as he continues to reflect on the challenges of growing up as a young black man in the UK. “I have chest pains, but I feel comfort,” he poetically raps. But it’s on project closer “Soldiers” that we get a taste of Headie’s newfound sincerity.

Recruiting Sampha for the effort, “Soldiers” sees Headie One venting his frustrations about being watched by police. Earlier this year, Headie was found to be in possession of a knife, an offense he’s currently serving six months in prison for. It ultimately led to a slew of demonization towards the drill and grime scene, with some BBC commentators claiming that his viral track “Know Better” helped in reinvigorating Wood Green and Tottenham’s gang wars. But on “Soldiers,” Headie disarms the hard-nosed gangster archetype often associated with drill and grime artists, looking towards a better future as he proclaims “I been through so much f*ckery but, still yet, we march on.”

Throughout GANG, Headie One effectually cements himself as one of London’s future kings — this is a rare artistic entrée from one of the most controversial figures in the UK’s loaded music scene, delivering a vividly-sincere evolution of his growing legacy.

You can stream Headie One and Fred again..’s GANG mixtape below.

For more new music, watch JME’s visual for “96 of My Life.”

Read Full Article

What to Read Next

Doja Cat, Drake and Ari Lennox Lead the 2022 BET Awards Nominations
Music

Doja Cat, Drake and Ari Lennox Lead the 2022 BET Awards Nominations

Doja Cat is the only artist to receive nods in both R&B/pop and hip hop categories this year.

Samsøe Samsøe Taps Nordisk for Another Outdoor Collection
Fashion

Samsøe Samsøe Taps Nordisk for Another Outdoor Collection

Featuring tote bags, water bottles, cooking equipment and more.

Kanye West Trademarks YEEZUS Amusement Parks, NFTs and More in New Patent Filings
Entertainment

Kanye West Trademarks YEEZUS Amusement Parks, NFTs and More in New Patent Filings

Notable goods and services include toys, sporting equipment, campaign buttons and more.


adidas Debuts Its Newest Adizero Adios Pro 3.0 Runner
Footwear

adidas Debuts Its Newest Adizero Adios Pro 3.0 Runner

The marathon-ready kicks are loaded with double layers of Lightstrike Pro foam.

10 Bright Colored Items for Easter Weekend
Fashion 

10 Bright Colored Items for Easter Weekend

Featuring 1017 ALYX 9SM, Off-White™, Stüssy, AMBUSH and more.

New Balance 992 Takes On Tropical Tones
Footwear

New Balance 992 Takes On Tropical Tones

Mixing shades of pink, blue and cyan with soft seersucker stripes.

Tekashi 6ix9ine Granted Immediate Early Prison Release
Music

Tekashi 6ix9ine Granted Immediate Early Prison Release

The rapper’s asthma made him vulnerable to COVID-19.

Greece is for Lovers 3D Prints Modular Flower Vase out of Sand
Design

Greece is for Lovers 3D Prints Modular Flower Vase out of Sand

Evoking the sandy shores of the Mediterranean.

'The Last of Us Part 2' Delayed Indefinitely
Gaming

'The Last of Us Part 2' Delayed Indefinitely

The second delay for the title.


These Are the Must-See TV Shows Premiering in April
Entertainment

These Are the Must-See TV Shows Premiering in April

Theatrical releases are taking a break for the foreseeable future, but there’s plenty of TV to stream.

Apple iPhone 9 May Release April 2020
Tech

Apple iPhone 9 May Release April 2020

The affordably-priced model may launch by mid-month.

Air Jordan 1 Low SE "Cyber" Offers Cheerful Colorblocking
Footwear

Air Jordan 1 Low SE "Cyber" Offers Cheerful Colorblocking

And a spray paint-style detail on its quarter panel.

Watch Yung Lean Perform New Tracks via Livestream (UPDATE)
Music

Watch Yung Lean Perform New Tracks via Livestream (UPDATE)

Fresh off announcing his ‘In My Head’ documentary.

Reebok Drops DMX Trail Shadow With Vivid Turquoise Details
Footwear

Reebok Drops DMX Trail Shadow With Vivid Turquoise Details

Alongside a bold red edition.

More ▾
 
Subscribe to our Newsletter

Gain access to exclusive interviews with industry creatives, think pieces, trend forecasts, guides and more.

By subscribing, you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

Looks like you’re using an ad-blocker

We charge advertisers instead of our readers. Support us by whitelisting our site.

Whitelist Us

How to Whitelist Us

screenshot
  1. Click the AdBlock icon in the browser extension area in the upper right-hand corner.
  2. Under “Pause on this site” click “Always”.
  3. Refresh the page or click the button below to continue.
screenshot
  1. Click the AdBlock Plus icon in the browser extension area in the upper right-hand corner.
  2. Block ads on – This website” switch off the toggle to turn it from blue to gray.
  3. Refresh the page or click the button below to continue.
screenshot
  1. Click the AdBlocker Ultimate icon in the browser extension area in the upper right-hand corner.
  2. Switch off the toggle to turn it from “Enabled on this site” to “Disabled on this site”.
  3. Refresh the page or click the button below to continue.
screenshot
  1. Click the Ghostery icon in the browser extension area in the upper right-hand corner.
  2. Click on the “Ad-Blocking” button at the bottom. It will turn gray and the text above will go from “ON” to “OFF”.
  3. Refresh the page or click the button below to continue.
screenshot
  1. Click the UBlock Origin icon in the browser extension area in the upper right-hand corner.
  2. Click on the large blue power icon at the top.
  3. When it turns gray, click the refresh icon that has appeared next to it or click the button below to continue.
screenshot
  1. Click the icon of the ad-blocker extension installed on your browser.You’ll usually find this icon in the upper right-hand corner of your screen. You may have more than one ad-blocker installed.
  2. Follow the instructions for disabling the ad blocker on the site you’re viewing.You may have to select a menu option or click a button.
  3. Refresh the page or click the button below to continue.