Dotz has been on the rise with speed over the last few years. Even though he’s only 21, he’s toured the country smashing battle leagues, playing some of the biggest festivals, winning JumpOffTV’s Battle Championships, and working with UK legend Si Phili as Phili N Dotz. Sunday October 27th sees his Third release unleashed onto the British public.
On TCBDSSB Dotz brings personal tribulations to the mic with a layer of honest reflection through his cathartic bars. His lyrics seem to represent him fully, rather than using the platform to just project a side of himself people might find favourable, he gives you the whole picture, for better or worse. March Forth is a classic Hip Hop opener, no hook, no bullshit, just Dotz going off over Passion Hifi’s pumping beat. “A dark horse who’s large jaw discharge thoughts, hardcore, slam ya fuckin head inside a car door, but no Lock, Stock and none of them can stop Dotz, I drop shots and make them jump around like it was hopscotch” .
On Sleep Talk, he cleverly changes up his flow from the opener’s storming approach to a more chilled delivery. He layers lines over rising piano melodies that capture that smoky, night time vibe. The haunting hooks on the chorus further prove his skill at crafting songs with structure and honesty with well written lyrical patterns; For me it’s the best song on the EP; “Manic depressive, impressive, expressive loner type, with a restless head, that’s as dead, as a fuckin poltergeist, roll the dice, you’ll catch me outside smoking Thai, or see me holding mine, wankered at an open mic”. With more tracks like this he could definitely become one to watch over the next year.
You’re Wrong uplifts the mood further with Soul samples and upbeat boom bap breaks that set the backdrop for Dotz to document the ups and downs of his relationship. He accurately puts across the mixed emotions felt, and shares some sound advice; “learn to swallow your pride and move past it ‘cuz being wrong is easy, admitting it’s the hard bit”. Flo Kirton’s voice adds another impressive element to the song, her voice suits Hip Hop well, but I’m not even guna pretend to have enough knowledge of the female music scene to even compare her to someone for you to put in context; I was feeling it though, and that speaks volumes.
The beat on the I Ask remix is more upbeat and memorable than the first time around, and that line about dead fish still makes me feel ill every time I hear it! Life Of A Fool is another stand out moment, the beat’s nice and the scratches and sung sample that lift the chorus are both executed eloquently, as with Still The Same the words take a more honest turn again and are less aggressive. For me, positive elevation through lyricism is a priority, so I find it hard to fully get behind the second half of the EP. No doubt there’s a large portion of UK Hip Hop that’s focused on the struggles of the daily grind and embrace the frustrations that come with it; but personally I feel the overtly negative tone on Braggin’ Rights & Puke dampened the bright start he came out with.
When Dotz isn’t being purposely antagonistic or offensive with his words he’s got some decent insight that can only grow and become more effective as he matures. He goes hard throughout the Eight tracks, and if he and his music find the direction they’re searching for he’ll shine. The Country Bumpkin’s Drunk Singing Skunk Binge is definitely a sign of good things to come from the Bedford-based MC.
Cop it digitally or on Digipak CD here.