Album: Riz MC, MICroscope (Confirm / Ignore)

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The Independent Culture

Uncompromising and diverse, the debut album by the Four Lions actor Riz Ahmed blends pop, drum and bass, grime and electro, linking incisive rhymes to hyperactive funk and dense bass to subtle acoustic strings.

One minute, Ahmed is grappling with injustice or satirising gentrification ("All in the Ghetto"), the next he's lulling the listener with a hypnotic spoken word ("Sour Times"). When it's good, it's a thrilling and ambtitious state-of-the-nation address.