By Ana Gonzalez
Upon first listening to UK rapper Bang On!’s debut album, [Sic], I thought it sounded exactly like the soundtrack to every episode of Channel 4’s Skins. Its beats were a cross-section of House music, dub step, ambient computer music, rock, and pop, and the lyrics were rapped through a heavy Liverpool accent. Through some research, I found that Bang On! actually appeared on the soundtrack to the movie Project X, a fact that explains a lot about this young lad with very little information.
Coming from someone who lives for and in the world of American hip-hop, blues, jazz and funk, Bang On!’s distinctly European party sound took some time to get used to. Rather than drawing from the likes of DJ Kool Herc, The Sugarhill Gang, Parliament Funkadelic, and Public Enemy, Elliot Egerton, the Liverpool native under the pseudonym of Bang On!, obviously has created a sound based on the environment in which he has grown into semi-adulthood: house parties. Not only that, but he is among the first native English rappers to successfully break into the world of the American media.
After realizing this, I had far more respect for and understanding of Bang On!. I heard his advanced flow and textual variations within his songs and tried to focus on his lyrics. The only problem was I could not understand the majority of what Elliot Egerton said. To say his accent is thick is an understatement: it sounds like he’s speaking another language (I suggest watching the official subtitled video for “Got IT” to better comprehend Bang On!’s lyricism). However, this is a fundamental part of Bang On!’s quirky, quintessentially English appeal. Bang On! is young, brash, funny, hostile, loyal to his hometown, and, above all, fresh. Even though he has far to go in his development as a rapper, Bang On! has come at the right time for the music industry. Check him out. You’ll be glad you did.