XOYO – December 1st

Given that grime is a genre that has it’s foundations in freestyle battles that have resulted in full blown fights, it is no trivial thing that P Money is one of the only MCs ever to have what is essentially a grime love letter written about him. The Lewisham local is known for his thunder and lightning flow that was honed in his early days as an MC on pirate radio. Since his beginnings in the mid 2000s, P Money has released a slew of fierce bangers, EPs and album length mix tapes. Despite his longevity however his new album Live and Direct is his official debut and sees the highly respected MC capture the raw energy that he is known for displaying during his radio freestyles and battle verses.

The intelligent tenacity of P Money’s 2010 track ‘Slang Like This’ is present throughout Live and Direct. This is especially true on the Skepta produced single ‘Gunfingers’ in which P Money shines a light on the everyday symbols of the London he grew up in. Fellow South Londoner Stormzy also makes an appearance on the menacing track ‘Keepin it Real’ and there is a new-era gleam that compares to Skepta’s ‘Lyrics’ on ‘Conspiracy Don’. Other tracks such as the Mr.Mitch produced ‘The Credits’ in which P money pays homage to those that have influenced him, adds an element of pathos to the album, especially with producer Mr.Mitch’s inverted take on grime.

P money sounds like an army of voices on record, which is perhaps why it is fitting that he brings out a plethora of guests at his launch at XOYO tonight. Before his set, some of the scenes newest head turners such as Capo Lee, Coco, and YGG bring merciless hype to the crowd. They are followed by grime veteran Footsie, who ends his set with a frenzy-inducing cameo from D Double E. When P Money finally takes the stage, the mosh-pit explodes as he launches into ‘Panasonic’ and the first reload of many to come stops everything but the roar of the crowd.

Genuine fans are clearly something that mean a lot to P Money, and tonight’s show he takes every opportunity to thank those that have supported him over the years, bringing his crew OG on stage as well as the MCs that opened for him. An intimate moment in the set sees P Money explain the opener to his album ‘The Intro’,”‘I never even got my English GCSE because I was in court. And it is all due to my father” he confesses to the crowd. P Money is an artist with a genuine anger for the world, but an anger that he managed to channel into music rather than let overcome him.

The hype returns, and ‘Slang Like This’ is followed by ‘Gunfingers’, which propels hands and phones into the air. The roar at the beginning of the track is bettered only when JME appears from the dense crowd on stage to take his verse. Both P Money and JME take the last verse of ‘Gunfingers’ in place of an absent Wiley. Fitting, as Wiley, often dubbed the ‘Godfather of grime’, is the one who deemed it necessary to break with tradition and pen a track in homage to one of the best MCs grime has produced to date.

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