J Hus Shines A Bright Light On UK Hip-Hop With Debut Project ‘Common Sense’

Written by James Crossan

East-London born hip-hop artist J Hus (real name Momodou Jallow) is finally releasing his debut album Common Sense on May 12th, almost two years since his mixtape The 15th Day dropped on the 26th July 2015. Previous singles Friendly and Did You See are familiar bangers among some incredible new music on the 17-track album.

The BBC Sound of 2016 finalist, who reached 17th in the UK singles chart with Did You See earlier this year, has clearly worked hard to maintain his distinctive style on the album and fans of his earlier work will not be left disappointed with this release.

J Hus himself is really excited to share the album with his fans, tweeting recently; “I can’t wait bro seriously” in reply to Stormzy tweeting about the forthcoming album.

The album features Mo Stack, MIST, Burna Boy and Tiggs da Author, who all bring their own flavour to the songs they contribute. The intro to Mash Up, featuring Mo Stack, has startling similarities to his own track Liar Liar, which brings something new to the album.

Speaking to GQ recently, he said of the album: “It’s a gamechanger. I started this sound, I’m the head of it. You can do it, but I’ll do it better.” He’s not wrong, either.

The 20-year-old was in danger of producing 17 identical songs with his distinguishing sound, but has created songs for nearly every situation. From chilling out to songs such as Who You Are and Good Luck Chale to club hits like Friendly and Good Time, there is something for everyone on the album.

The first song on the album, Common Sense is an impressive beginning; a powerful instrumental is accompanied by an equally commanding flow. Bouf Daddy and Clartin come next, and we really hear classic J Hus shine through in these two tracks. Boastful lyrics and catchy flows, no doubt you’ll find yourself singing along to these numbers.

There are influences from numerous genres in the album, which helps it to stay lively. Plottin’ has clear roots in classic garage, Sweet Cheeks sounds like it’s come straight from a Drake album, and Closed Doors has a jazzy origin. It’s testament to J Hus’ talent that he sounds comfortable creating so many different sounds; every song sounds classy and natural.

The album itself maybe lacks what the most recent Skepta and Stormzy albums have had to make them huge hits – it hasn’t been created to be universally appreciated. This is in no way a criticism, however. Hus has stuck to the formula which has got him this far, whereas both ‘Konnichiwa’ and ‘Gang Signs and Prayers’ could have been considered to have more of a mainstream focus.

It could work wonders for him, too – he has been attracting fans such as BBC North West presenter Becky Barr, who recently tweeted “I’ve been listening to @Jhus all evening while I’ve been working. Not sure what the effect upon my delivery of the telly-news will be.” He will be hoping many more new listeners will enjoy his style as much as hardened fans do.

At the time of writing, it’s the most pre-ordered album in the UK and I’m fairly sure it will do well in the album charts in its opening weekend. It seriously deserves to, it’s a masterpiece considering he’s only 20 and could take Summer 2017 by storm.

You can purchase Common Sense online here.

Watch the video for Did You See below.

Credit: JHusVEVO

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