This summer I took on a factory job to raise the money I needed to gain the keys to the gummy tarmac of our nation's capital city. So the majority of my sunlight hours have so far been spent sitting in front of basic machinery, trying to kill time and slowly being submerged beneath the robotic processes that work best in a factory floor drive towards efficiency. The term 'bored stupid' never resonated so hard; the 9-5 grind causing the breakdown of all basic human communication skills (a situation which usually extended past 5pm and tricked me into watching Hollyoaks every day last week).
It is also a situation which I am obviously compensating for with this rambling introduction, but among the noise at work is the constant roar of FM radio that chases me though the factory. One song that the radio plays is 'The Avenue' by East London grime crew Roll Deep. Now, I'm sure you've heard references to 'hooks' in music. I'm not as sure, but I strongly suspect that for some the term would never resonate harder than after hearing this tune for the first time. Even before this flared up like a brilliantly scratchable bout of chicken pox all 'cross the media, I've held its bastardised, grimdisco hook hostage in my throat all summer, the cut's insatiable chorus never two minutes from my cracked lips.
"I've found a place to live, I got it the hard way/ A permanent address to give, I got it for always" - as easy as that a melody is born that will surely survive to haunt me long past the onset of dementia, and the bonus is that this is one of the freshest things I've heard for a long time. While most daytime radio stutters like me after a few hours employment this bowls and bounds around in the sunshine like a chocolate Labrador puppy on E, (not X, this is Yank-free, You-K hiphop, sonshine). B-side 'When I'm 'Ere' is an almost obligatory nod to Wiley and his boys' UK garage Hoodrat origins. Barking from shadow like a chained up staff, the song is the crew on a macho defensive after the bright and breezy opener. But whilst this swoons with contagiously agitated intent, the boys chose the right song to hoist the flag for E3: if only for the reason that 'The Avenue' is sweet enough a delight to distract me from my work and remind me that one day soon I will go bowling and bounding through scoundrel streets still drunk on the night before; unshaved and unloved but still ultimately undeterred.