You’re probably wondering who’s going to pick up the baton of Brit rap since Mike Skinner has announced that his next album would be his last. Who will lead the working-class blokes and teach the world a thing or two about street wisdom? Well look no further than the silver-tongued spitter known as Trip.
Sounding more indie than dance (think The Streets vs The Clash), Alex Child aka Trip is widely being hailed as the next Mike Skinner, and it’s no surprise with his ability to turn the mundane into magic. After gaining a set of A-level results that prophetically spelt D-U-D-E, Trip began dropping lyrics in mates’ studios and on pirate radio. All this before cutting his teeth on the live circuit with a succession of heavyweight players, including Grooverider, Shy FX and most notably Scratch Perverts and Killa Kela. It was with the latter with whom he toured the world supporting the likes of Justin Timberlake, NERD, Busta Rhymes, Redman and Outkast.
His recently released debut album ShortCuts is a kaleidoscope of contradictions about the joys and pains, excitement and boredom of city life through the eyes of a young man. Produced by Lance Thomas (Ladytron, Mark Rae, Simian), the album’s lead single ‘River Phoenix’ chronicles the highs and lows of our protagonist’s first date – from the cocky nervousness of splashing on the Ralph Lauren and flirting over food, to her untimely discovery that River Phoenix has died, ending all hope of their first kiss.
Much like Skinner, the 24-year-old rapper has a wild side. With an uncanny resemblance to Slim Shady, Trip’s ‘Who’s That’ is the ‘My Name Is’ of today’s generation – an all-out rant that contains the line: “I lost my cherry to the solo in ‘November Rain’. Giving his take on the decline of British culture, the song which was voted Tune of the Week in DJ Magazine declares war on spammers, tailgaters and Bono, amongst other things.
Though the dirt is kicked up on ‘Laundromat’ – a song about a girl who “only had a smile on” when she achieved the big-O on a washing machine – there are some soulful moments on the album. On ‘The Gambler’, Trip shows empathy through a story of regret and loneliness of a compulsive gambler and potential suicide.
The powerful collection of urban tales on ShortCuts have even spawned its own feature film, DayTrip. Shot in album running order over a 24-hour period by 11 directors, DayTrip accompanies the album by Autonomy Recordings as a special edition free DVD. Wicked!
Watch your step! Checkout Trip at www.myspace.com/tripskingdom. ShortCuts hit stores on 27 June 2009.