• Samee Anibaba

What Do You Mean You Don’t Listen to Scorcher?

This week we saw North London’s own Scorcher join Kenny Allstar over at Mixtape Madness for his first Mad About Bars freestyle; and it was a serious performance to say the least. it's a platform that has seen crossovers like Digdat and Loski as well as underground talents like M Huncho, but Scorcher shows us that when it comes to a quick freestyle, you're catching him in his territory.

For a genre that is constantly criticsed for being lacking lyrcically, Scorcher pushes  the levels while making his entry into the genre feel natural, and not forced. But is he getting the shine he deserves, not only for this freestyle, but for the quiet run he’s been on since his release last year?

For this edition of What Do You Mean You Don’t Listen To, I’m breaking down Scorcher and reminding you why it’s a problem if he dabbles in drill.

You haven’t heard of Scorcher?

Scorcher first came to my attention on early features and remixes; classics like Private Caller and not-so-classics like She Likes To. But Scorcher, aka Skywalker, or even Top Boy S1’s Kamale, has proven that in verse after verse, he’s not your average rapper. He's definitely cut from the same cloth as the elites; the Skeptas and the Ghetts' of Grime and UK Rap. 

Scorcher for me has always been an underrated, but an overachieving MC. He was never as popular or as highly regarded as his fellow Movement members, Ghetts and Wretch 32, but he’s just as capable when it comes to bars. And not just bars - he’s a project artist with a number of albums and tapes under his belt, dabbling in rap, grime, trap, pop, and now drill.

He’s said it best in one of his infamous freestyle bars - ‘Hip hop or garage, you choose but you lose’.

Standout Songs

Scorcher’s talent is that he can enter any arena and outdo anyone. He’s a rappers’ rapper and an MC’s MC. So naturally, he’s never been a stranger to a good diss track. Way before Wiley and Stormzy, Scorcher added Dappy to a list of opponents that includes Jammer, Frisco, Wiley and Roachee. This was a time when Dappy was separating himself from N Dubz and reestablishing a rap career with his Tarzan freestyles - but Scorcher ruthlessly dismantles him over a surprisingly poppy beat and put a firm footprint on his whole career. If you need to know about Scorcher, this isn’t his first diss, or his last, (as a controversial and censored daily duppy freestyle proved) but it’s definitely one of the most memorable.

'work get it' comes from Scorcher’s last full length project, 1 of 1. It saw Scorcher and two more Movement members Wretch and Mercston go back to back over a smooth, but uplifting electronic beat. The song is about being on the grind and enjoying the fruits of your labour but it's so well executed it deserves a mention. The beat is constantly evolving and the video features a panoramic view that separates itself from your average rap video.

The whole project is just as well done, with bangers like 'Lord', and slower, more melodic songs like ‘No One Else’, showing that Scorcher can put together an album that feels like it should be on a physical copy.

The last standout song is Could Be Worse, Scorcher’s first song back after being released. he came back and he did it properly. The beat is cold, with a rising and falling bass and some haunting vocal melodies that Scorcher just goes blind over. His flow is ridiculous, and for his comeback song, he sets the bar and expectations very high.

Hidden Gems