Albums to watch


Roots Manuva


Album number six from Rodney Smith, veteran of the London hip-hop scene with production from Four Tet and Adrian Sherwood

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  1. 9.0 |   Loud And Quiet

    An energised call to arms and a celebration which is peppered with a wry, macabre sense of humour that tempers its statements and lends them a more considered weight
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  2. 9.0 |   The Line Of Best Fit

    Bleeds is a concise and heavily focused record that can proudly sit in and amongst his best
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  3. 9.0 |   musicOMH

    A heart so firmly on his sleeve we can see it there, beating. It’s what makes him so important to British music today
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  4. 8.0 |   State

    There’s no song here that doesn’t feel like a master craftsman at work
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  5. 8.0 |   The Quietus

    In its own way Bleeds is a blues album, coloured by suffering and shared guilt
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  6. 8.0 |   Evening Standard

    Rapper Rodney Smith has lost none of his edge - despite a move to suburban Surrey - on his sixth album
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  7. 8.0 |   NME

    To borrow one of his old album titles, this is awfully deep
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  8. 8.0 |   DIY

    Bends and twists genres into more combinations than are possible on a Rubix cube
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  9. 8.0 |   The Independent

    As he observes in “Stepping Hard”, it’s all about perseverance and endurance, about trying to be a mountain in a molehill culture
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  10. 8.0 |   The Skinny

    Bleeds is the shortest, but arguably most eclectic and intense Roots Manuva album to date
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  11. 8.0 |   Mojo

    The always-healthy flow of Rodney Smith’s musical and lyrical ideas has never pumped in quite such vivid crimson as it does on Bleeds. Print edition only

  12. 8.0 |   Q

    A powerful and unique voice back on top form. Print edition only

  13. 8.0 |   Clash

    With ‘Bleeds’, he manages to avoid being defined while maintaining his distinctiveness. It’s a classic Roots manoeuvre
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  14. 8.0 |   Exclaim

    A dense, dark, demanding listen. But patient, socially conscious audiences will not only find it compelling, but galvanizing too
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  15. 8.0 |   Uncut

    Like 2008's Slime & Reason, Bleeds can come on a bit like an episode of "Grumpy Old MCs." But there's always room for salvation in Smith's world. Print edition only

  16. 8.0 |   The Irish Times

    Bleeds is another step on from 2011’s 4everevolution, with Smith taking stock of the world around him from a veteran’s perch in suburbia
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  17. 8.0 |   The Music

    There are elements of light scattered throughout the primarily dark record
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  18. 8.0 |   The FT

    Bleeds finds him in formidable form, delivering densely packed verses over inventive layers of production
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  19. 8.0 |   The Arts Desk

    This is a disc with gut-punchingly real expression shot through it
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  20. 8.0 |   Gig Soup

    With ten tracks in forty minutes, 'Bleeds' benefits from being one of the shortest and most focussed efforts of Smith's stellar career
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  21. 8.0 |   NOW

    One of his most dynamic, intimate and humble artistic efforts, revealing more with every listen
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  22. 8.0 |   Resident Advisor

    Bleeds is a jagged journey with purposeful peaks and troughs
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  23. 7.0 |   PopMatters

    Roots Manuva proves that he stands high above the game on the fantastic Bleeds
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  24. 6.0 |   The Guardian

    The best songs paint him as guardian of the apocalypse, pairing his world-weary soulfulness with murky, mutant beats
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  25. 6.0 |   The Observer

    Bleeds opens with a tirade against the free market labels pretty much everybody as bastards
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  26. 6.0 |   Beardfood

    A barren intellectual wasteland populated by tortured minds and over-informed souls
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Roots Manuva: Bleeds

  • Download full album for just £7.99
  • 1. Hard Bastards £0.99
  • 2. Crying £0.99
  • 3. Facety 2:11 £0.99
  • 4. Don’t Breathe Out £0.99
  • 5. Cargo £0.99
  • 6. Stepping Hard £0.99
  • 7. Me Up! £0.99
  • 8. One Thing £0.99
  • 9. I Know Your Face £0.99
  • 10. Fighting For? £0.99
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