album of the month | giggs ‘wamp 2 dem’

‘Wamp to dem’ is a Jamaican Patois phrase which roughly translates to ‘what’s wrong with them?’ Remember this information, you’re gonna need it later.

It’s also the title of the latest offering from UK hip-hop general Giggs and it comes at a time where all eyes are on him, and the scene he’s pioneered, like never before. After years of tireless work on the underground, Giggs finally crested with his brash album Landlord, which shot to No. 2 on the charts last year.

What followed was several high profile tours, festival sets and two features on Drake’s More Life project which set the international hip-hop blogosphere ablaze. Many fans, including prominent American tastemakers like DJ Akademiks, trashed the Peckham rapper for his distinctive flow and British style, something which Giggs turned on its head while promoting the album.

Now, remember what the title meant? It’s critical to the mood of this project. Because all this criticism leads Giggs to ask “Wamp to dem?” and double down on his bruising, lumbering style of rap more than ever. If Landlord was the straddling of underground and mainstream, Wamp 2 Dem is Giggs with both feet firmly planted in eff-what-you-think territory.

The mixtape format allows him to push the hard edge of his sound while leaning into his thunderous stop-start flow. It also allows him to take risks, with American rappers 2 Chainz and Young Thug featuring while stateside producers Cool N Dre and London On Tha Track handle the beats. It’s a clear statement to the foreign powers that he would rather bend their institutions to suit him than bend the knee.

All throughout, Giggs never abandons what got him to the dance, delivering knockout punchlines over hard-hitting production you can dance to. You only have to look to the highlights ‘Times Tickin’ and ‘Linguo’ to confirm that.

The message to those who don’t know about Giggs’ talent, both at home and abroad, is obvious – get to know. Because it doesn’t matter what side of the atlantic he’s on, Giggs is one of the best at his craft. Wamp 2 Dem proves it.