"This album most recalls Eminem’s Revival; another record obsessed with lifeless piano raps, which confused being honest with being thoughtful. It’s important that Loyle Carner is exploring the idea of toxic masculinity through his music, but it’s a shame he’s doing so in such a boring way."
"I’m sleeping in the doorway outside Heal’s on Tottenham Court Road, yet have a feature film to my name. Not bad, huh? I guess I want to show the public that homeless people have dreams too."
The 27th part of my 'London on Screen' series for Time Out and a look at the tailors from Kingsman: the Secret Service...
When Trump won the election, photographer Brian Rose made straight for the gambling town – to show the reality behind his billionaire boasts. The broken city he captured speaks volumes about today’s America.
In this cover feature, Thomas Hobbs speaks to rising UK rapper Ms Banks about racism, sexism, Cardi B, and why she wants to open up doors for other female emcees...
"By selecting I Got 5 on It to punctuate Us, Peele has introduced a stoner rap anthem to a new generation, many of whom will be analysing the song’s lyrics for clues that could explain the film’s many mysteries. Let’s just hope this mad pursuit doesn’t make them go delirious, like Eddie Murphy."
"Nipsey Hussle's existence was about showing working class black youth that they could grow beyond their area code and achieve enduring success. After all, being a Crip from Crenshaw never held Nipsey back, so why should a humble beginning prevent anyone else from fulfilling their dreams?"
The provocative noise-rapper intelligently holds a mirror up to the dark side of the web – the trolls, the racism, the nihilism – to satirise American culture and politics at large...
"On this timeless record, Gaye consistently sparks joy even though he’s scared about the future, and its 2019 release is chance for a whole new generation of listeners to connect with the legendary singer. It’s a reminder of an era in which our pop stars spoke from the heart, unafraid of losing a million-dollar endorsement, more concerned with uplifting their people."
Some of the greatest movies were filmed right on our doorstep. Thomas Hobbs maps out a film lover's tour of Central London.
"When artists like Future and Scott, both of whom are clearly reference points for NAV, rap about the trappings of living the good life, they do so with a playful self-awareness, with their boasts about women usually juxtaposed with inner feelings of dread. NAV, however, raps about money, drugs, and women with all the depth of a kiddie pool."
The 26th part of my 'London on Screen' series for Time Out and a look at the guinea pig-themed cafe from Fleabag and the various makeovers it has endured over the last few years...
"Juice WRLD closes the album with ‘Make Believe’, which samples 1990s group Pharcyde’s legendary ‘Runnin’, but rather than honour the song’s sardonic lyrics, he pours his heart out about a doomed romance. The track shows how young rappers can honour tradition without losing sense of their own individuality."
"Dave’s “Black,” built around inspiring lyrics such as “Black ain’t just a single fuckin’ color/ man there’s shades to it,” hammers home the idea that black people are not a monolith, and their art is not something that can easily fit inside a box."