Five months ago, on a bitterly cold night in South London, Skepta, and JME detonated a co-headline set at the Brixton Academy in front of thousands of thronging bodies. Safe to say, there were more reloads than the first three Die Hard films.
That night, Skepta decided to interrupt the classics by premiering some new material. The crowd went quiet, a wirey sample cued in with a thudding beat beneath, huge projections of photographs from the London riots appeared on stage, and Skeppy launched into a brand new banger of which the only frequent word everyone could absolutely join in on was "Gang!". Now, with his forthcoming Konnichiwa album painfully close to being released (it's out on May 6), he's dropped the official version: "Man (Gang)," which, according to Dummy, samples the Queens of the Stone Age track "Regular John."
The track comes off the back off a lorry load of Skepta news. During the week, he revealed the artwork (which, via the use of a stamp, basically posits Skepta as new British royalty) and a tracklist (which kinda looks like BBK stole your school jotter). You can see both below.
Last night, the album pre-order was made available on iTunes, revealing that the record is going to include additional features from Pharrell Williams, Wiley, Chip, and Novelist—adding to the ones we already know, like JME, Yung Lord, D Double E, and more. A new version of the smoke-filled chill track "Ladies Hit Squad" has been added too, which includes an extra forty seconds on the end during which Skepta croons lonely lyrics into the abyss like a sad King Krule.
It's been a two year hype train of US tours, unannounced shows on London streets, rumoured release dates, studio shots on Instagram, and heavy, heavy singles. But finally, we can almost taste the tropical fruit that is going to be Konnichiwa.
Listen to the latest track "Man (Gang)" below.