Dubbed as a ‘kingpin’ of Grime, the acclaimed Dizzee Rascal brought a raucous and energetic set to the 02 Academy as part of his Raskit tour, aiming to promote his album of the same name. Dizzee kicked off the set with ‘Space’, an acute and lyrically charged single from Raskit that harks back to the roots of 2003’s Boy in da Corner. This was seamlessly followed by the equally loaded ‘Ghost’ in which Dizzee states, “I was on the mic when you were in playschool”. The blunt reality of this statement reminds Dizzee’s audience of an exceedingly talented 18 year-old, who won the Mercury award for a ground-breaking debut album. Appropriately, Dizzee then shouts to the audience “let’s take it back to those Boy in da Corner days”, before breaking into crowd favourite ‘I Luv You’.
Sandwiched between lightning lyrics of self-reflection and sharp social commentary, Dizzee treated the crowd to some old-school chart classics. Favourites such as ‘Holiday’, ‘Bassline Junkie’ and ‘Fix Up, Look Sharp’ proved to be particular crowd pleasers. However, a highlight of the set was definitely when Dizzee stated “let’s give these beautiful ladies something they can dance to” before launching into ‘Dance Wiv Me’, his classic collaboration with Calvin Harris and Chrome.
Following a blistering set, it was only right that ‘Bonkers’ was the encore, even if Dizzee teased that he couldn’t play another song due to the strict curfew. Despite the mosh pits of the earlier songs, this finale certainly caused the greatest audience reaction as everyone really did go bonkers in a unified adoration of Dizzee.
As one of Britain’s most beloved artists and a major contributor to the development of Grime, Dizzee Rascal’s fierce return with Raskit yet again solidifies him as one of the most relevant and talented artists of his generation.
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