The wicked and wonderful, horrifying and humorous stylings of the explosive street sound known as UK Drill has – at the turn of the decade – penetrated urban culture to the it’s core and captivated the imagination of a whole generation. From Hackney to Harrow, there ain’t a hood in the homeland that doesn’t have a cliqued up group of yoots, recording tunes, releasing tunes and racking up YouTube views – alongside their occupationally hazardous criminal charges to create, at the very least a humble buzz in their hometown. The sheer amount of Drill rappers is boundless and as a result the amount of available music is the same.
In a sea of singles, mixtapes, music videos and viral violation videos it’s hard to distinguish the (one trip pony) gunman MC’s from the gifted MC’s. So in an effort to recognise the talented and accomplished front liners flying the flag for the UK and setting pace for the global stage, I present to you (in my humble opinion) the 5 most relevant UK Drill crews of the moment.
Another crew firing out of Brixton, 150 – like 67 – have long roots in the Drill game, and on the roadside. With M24 leading the charge in terms of consisten solid releases, alongside Stizzy Stickz, S Wavey, Grizzy and MDargg puttin in the graft the crew has kept their name in the conversation year in year out. With S Wavey getting signed last year and M24 continuing to hold it up this year.they have still maintained enough quality in the more recent times, but not enough to allow them to sit – if you ask me – above the competition for the number 4 spot in terms of relevance today.
If you don’t know about 67 you’re probably not reading this, so don’t need to give their backstory. These man – out of the original UK Drills dons – have done the best to remain relevant, experiment and at the same time maintain all credibility. The workrate has been consistent since they first touch down and all in all – as a crew – produced solid selections throughout. It’s a difficult time for the Brixton boys with LD & ASAP going down for a county lines sting this year and finding themselves slapped with 4.5 years. Dimzy seems to be holdin it down for the older set with youngers like AK stepping into the picture in recent months.
So, although it’s going to be a while til we see the full crew back together, the 67 seems like it will live on for the foreseeable future and the legacy as London’s all time leading drillers will remain in tact.. For now at least.
Making the most noise with the wickedest war dubs in West London CGM – formerly known as 1011 are cited as the crew that changed game. When the crew went viral in the summer of 2018 leading to the first asbo of its kind for music in the UK banning them from releasing music on YouTube and leading to a relatively short prison term for 5 of the members and their music making its way onto porn sites (another first) as a result.
They’ve had their names ringin’ on the socials and streets since they burst on the scene. A long list of bangers and a instalive and snapchat social buzz built on violations and brazen antics has put them in the upper echelon of UK Drill talent. With Digga D, along with brother Sav’O and Horrid Huncho building a humble buzz before a Digga and Sav found themselves being remanded into custody in earlier this year after the jakes linked them to a shooting in West London not long before, which has impacted the consistency there most recent releases.
With the fate of the most prolific leaders of the UK Drill second gen that played a huge role shaping the scene hanging in the balance with the Digga D’s freedom in the new not completely off the cards.it’s unclear how much they’ll there most talented MC’s will influence the future of the scene. But despite that, seeing as they still have members on road and they freedom isn’t completely gone they can retain their place in the top selection of the moment.
Widely considered to be one of the most dangerous crews in South London. Zone 2’s hit rate on and off the streets has been unrivaled in the second half of this year. The crew has released a string of high energy singles and in terms of sinister sonics are completely unrivaled in the scene today. There isn’t a bigger set of talented demonic drillers in the capital. There most resent release as a full crew entitled ‘No Censors’ was taken off YouTube within hours when they deliberately broke YouTube guidelines by naming murder victims, and since then has persistently been removed within days. This, along with their music does a lot to illustrate their street credentials and sheer brazenness.
Their legitimacy as arguably the most untouchable crew with virtually 0 L’s taken and a seemingly clean shirt on the very real “scoreboard” – also highlighted by the sonic the hedgehog sound effects over each name in the aforementioned release ‘No Censors’ reinforces this face. With everyone of their opps including Harlem Spartans and Moscow17 has unfortunately lost multiple members in the last 2 years reinforcing their weight on the roads. The team have put in sufficient work in all capacities to cement their status has 1 of the UK’s most relevant criminal and artistically commercial cartels.
Following in the footsteps of the (slightly) olders Headie One & RV, BandoKay, Double Lz and SJ – alongside their team maters – have been beating it up this. Headie One’s achievements in the last year have been undeniable. A leading light in the scene in the phase the followed 67’s initial buzz, the crew he claims, hailing from The Broadwater Farm estate in Tottenham, OFB have been one of the most exciting collectives in terms of the amount of contrasting styles, flows and accolades exclusively within drill. With Abra Cadabra making a major breakthrough buzz in the second quarter of the decade with ‘Robbery’, followed up by the phenomenal rise of the OFB set comprising of Bandokay, Double Lz and SJ in the last couple years.
Despite the unfortunate timing of SJ receiving a life sentence last month, the rest of the boys have shown no sign of slowing down. And will be taken their furious flows into the new decade with even more exciting results.
Honorary shoutout to Dot Rotten who outside of waging war with the whole Grime scene – a subject I’m gunna touch on next week – has also been contributing to the UK Drill landscape behind the scene under the ‘BRIGADE NETWORK’ moniker. Not much is known about the degree of his involvement, but one thing that’s for sure, is that his heavily involved in the production. With his latest assisted released coming in the form of this banger:
POSTED BY: @TIMI.WATSONROSE