- Could this be the Tottenham rapper's first UK #1?
- The closing shot in the video for Headie One's "Ain't It Different," the first single from his long-awaited debut album, shows the UK drill heavyweight standing high over London, a king surveying his kingdom. The metaphor is apt: the track, which features Stormzy and AJ Tracey, screams UK #1. This would be the apex of a meteoric rise, which in 2020 alone includes collaborations with Jamie xx, FKA twigs and Drake.
The guests aren't even the main attraction. Toddla T and Fred Gibson, the in-demand producer who works closely with Headie One, built the booming beat around two mega samples: "Pretty Little Ditty" by Red Hot Chili Peppers (made famous by Crazy Town's "Butterfly") and UK garage smash "Bump 'N' Grind" by M-Dubs. The latter does most of the legwork, dominating the chorus in a warbled squeal. It's instantly catchy, which might indicate a short shelf life. The same goes for Stormzy and AJ Tracey, who ride the beat immaculately without living long in the memory. Headie One, on the other hand, is pure gold, his flow cold as ice. With bars like "You ain't ever made a birthday cake from digestive biscuits," he deserves top spot.
01. Ain't It Different