Mixtape Review: DVS – One in a Billion
15 Nov 2011
Deriving from one of the UK’s most controversial yet influential collectives in the underground music scene; Devious (DVs) a proud member of the once notorious ‘Peel Dem Crew’ who are now also recognised by other definitions such as; ‘Poverty Driven Children’, ‘Pray Days Change’ and so on has become one of the best rappers currently in the game. This ‘Bricky’ South Londoner has been creating waves from a young age and has no plans of throwing in the towel anytime soon, I think when it comes to DVs he’s popularity stems from the fact that he is the epiphany of what we call a ‘realist’. In this sense I’m referring to the fact that everything he enforces in his lyrics is simply the way he lives his life. With every verse within every song, amongst every mixtape, DVs has created an autobiographical platform where he invites his audience into the most sacred place known to man – his heart.
Another thing that strikes me about him is that he ‘owns his flow’, just the other day my friend began reciting lyrics to a song I had never heard before but from distinctive pronunciations I was able to identify it to be a DVs verse. To me that is a quality all the greatest rappers obtain, ‘Biggie’, ‘2pac’, ‘Nas’, ‘Jay-Z’ etc.
It’s been 6 years to this date since DVs has released a mixtape that’s not to say that he hasn’t been working on other projects in the meantime – freestyles, singles etc but I’m sure I wasn’t the only one who literally almost fell into some kind of ‘dramatic epileptic shock’ when I got wind of the news that he was finally releasing his second mixtape “One in a Billion” at such a symbolic time such as ‘Remembrance Day’ (11/11/11).
With the bar set high in 2005 with his 1st mixtape “One in a Million” I would like to make the assumption and say that “One in a Billion” would have to be the most anticipated mixtape of this year. As everyone is aware of DVs’ capabilities we know all too well that he won’t be disappointing us and to prove this statement here is a rundown of my most favourable tracks….
03. Crazy World (ft. Jaja Soze & Naja Soze)
As soon as I heard the pianist on this track I automatically knew I would fall in love with it straight away. A slow melody will always capture my heart because I know that’s where I’m bound to hear some real, heartfelt lyrics and that’s exactly the verdict on this track as all three PDC artists deliver some form of sentiment….
“…look in the cupboards no food again, mommas in a mood again….ain’t afraid to lose a friend, I have already lost a few, amount of my n****** that’s gone I’ve already lost a crew…”
“…this is the life we live where we make it and don’t give, and who you don’t give comes back and splits your wig…”
– Jaja Soze
“…I wake up every day and wana while out they say its normal for these streets to drive a man insane, corrupt lifestyle need food for the brain, so smoke hell a weed…”
– Naja Soze
05. A Mans Life (ft.GigiDaai)
Story Telling – another one of my favourite types of concepts. This particular tale is quite deep in fact, a young lad driven by the ‘fame’ of the streets finds himself enduring all the benefits of that life including the consequences. This track may hit home for some of us as we may know individuals who are involved in this kind of lifestyle or even we are ourselves can hold our hands up and say we are presently living it.
“…took a sip and got addicted to the life, he took a taste and got addicted to the game, now people knew his name he got addicted to the fame…”
“…always wanted to take a man’s life, he never knew it would be so easy right, he never knew he’ll feel so greazy like, nobody told you about the sleepless nights…”
06. Go From Here (ft. T.Labelle)
A track definitely for the ladies – it is only in my biased nature that I must promote any form of song that a rapper dedicates to females not only that but the lyrics in this one are truly emotional, I’m literally just drifting away reflecting back on a similar situation and that’s the very beauty of it all, meaningful lyrics that allow such feelings to be evoked once listened to…
“…she just thinks I’m hard to please so she calls me every day and suffocates me till it’s hard to breathe, she says she loves me I just hope she don’t say that s*** in vain, furthermore I kinda hope that she don’t say that s*** again, ‘cause I like this girl a lot we are different but the same…”
They say women are the complicated ones, but in this scenario it will prove that from a man’s perspective they are indeed the confused ones, as ‘love’ is seen as the obstacle of progression here instead of the foundation.
This sample of Adele’s track ‘Hometown’ is just brilliant; I loved it on the freestyle ‘Krept and Konan’ did over it and I love it even more with DVs’ rendition. This track is very patriotic as he pays homage to his neighbourhood – Brixton and not only that but he conveys a real love for his friends who are currently in prison as he showcases numerous telephone conversations between them throughout the entire track.
“…I’m from a hood where ladies wear hood wear, if less than 5 people die that’s a good year…”
“…the 28’s use to tell me you just rap, little DV all you need to do is rap, but just when I was about to just do all that, I fell in love with the streets, girls, money and macs…”
12. Bout It (Young Spray) & 19. Maybe (ft. Exo)
Had to include these two last tracks just for the simple fact that even before I heard track 12 I knew it would be a ‘banger’ just from the feature with Young Spray, another one of rap’s finest UK underground artists. Track 19 was quite surprising to me as I didn’t expect to hear a sample of one of Oasis’ greatest songs – “Wonderwall” but I love the fact DVs took that versatile decision to rap over it, (plus it’s another song for the girlies so you can never disappoint me with one of those).
The highly anticipated and long awaited 1 in a Billion mixtape from South Londoner and PDC member DVS who after 5 years has promised this mixtape to be a master piece.
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