Review: Skepta – Make Peace Not War


After releasing a number of free tracks in the last couple of months, the self-proclaimed King of Grime has dropped the second single from his forthcoming fourth studio album, The Honeymoon.

When I saw the title, I had half-expected to hear a deep tune, complete with meaningful lyrics, possibly inspired by last August’s London riots and the like. But this was a huge misconception. Instead, Make Peace Not War is an upbeat, and kind of cheesy ‘Hip-Pop’ type track, full of self-praising lyricism from the Tottenham emcee.  The song does receive a bonus point for the sampling of C+C Music Factory’s Gonna Make You Sweat (Everybody Dance Now) in the instrumental, though.

Whilst Skepta discusses important subjects such as fashion, jewellery and his now affluent lifestyle, there is no mention of warfare or the suffering of others. Despite this, the lyricism features Skepta’s usual wit, with lines such as ‘these other guys just ain’t got the stamina, me? I rock ‘n’ roll like Noel Gallagher’ standing out.

The visuals for Make Peace Not War have also been released, and are quite entertaining, with cameos from T4 and Radio 1 presenter Matt Edmondson and 1Xtra DJ Mista Jam, amongst other friends from the business.

On the whole, the track isn’t actually that bad. It is obviously another attempt to follow up his biggest hit, Rescue Me, which peaked at number 14 in the UK chart back in 2010, and has the potential to do so. It should also be popular in the clubs – but what it won’t do is satisfy fans of grime music. However, he has often claimed to try and balance the more commercial sound that is required to be successful in the mainstream, whilst not forgetting the genre that gave him his popularity, and his recent free tracks seemed to target his more ‘underground’ fan base.

How well his new album charts upon release will probably be the defining point in his musical career, as he will certainly be looking to advance on last year’s Doin’ It Again, which hit 19 in the album’s chart. But in the meantime, the Honeymoon may be over for this single.

Check out the video for Make Peace Not War here.

Release Date: 29th April 2012


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