Monday, 12 November 2012

Top 102 Albums. No 98. A Grand Don't Come for Free

Top 102 Albums. No 98. 
A Grand Don't Come for Free. The Streets.

This is as much to convince myself that I have been listening to the odd record released after the year 2000. The Streets were one of the only bands I discovered at the same time as my daughter but despite this I was able to take this to heart and felt it was an instant classic. I was not alone. Youth and age recognised this one.

It seems to me that Mike Skinner is the poet laureate of the blindingly mundane. He talks about trying to find his phone in his pocket and the battery running out, what was on TV the other night, betting on footie, broken tv's, "watching Eastenders or the Bill". He manages to undercut the whole world of 'gangster rap' by being really 'street'. In one of my favourite moments he pastiches drive bys: "Then of course a mandatory car, drives by and splashes me."

The whole album hangs together, telling the story of a day in the life of Mr Skinner, losing money, girlfriends and friends and perhaps working it all out in the end. It is a funny, reflective album that feels like a sketch and yet is full of the most minute detail. and the detail is spot on.

Here's the first and last tracks.


  1. I missed this totally; kind of tuned out when I heard to cockney gangster rap kick in. I will, with your good guidance sir, give it a listen...

  2. I got this because of all the great reviews of the time ... it is one of those ones that I know is really great lp without really getting it .. same can be said of Plan B's Ill Manors

  3. I thing this is calssic to and great concept album ,Hoping Skinner returns to form of this and orginal pirate in his new venture ,all the best stu