Berwyn: Tape 2/ Fomalhaut overview – a compelling work of uncertainty
Born in Trinidad, raised in east London, this rapper and singer’s eventful autobiography was laid out on his shifting debut, Demotape/Vega (2020). Berwyn’s mum’s struggles included spells in jail; her son typically discovered himself homeless. Like its predecessor, Tape 2/Fomalhaut is partly named after a star and charts the interior climate of its mournful, charismatic protagonist.
Berwyn – full title Berwyn Du Bois – might need loved much more success final 12 months, have been it not for his hazy immigration standing – Vega didn’t qualify for the Brit awards. Right here, I’d Fairly Die Than Be Deported – a stark piano affair peppered with lure percussion – and Full Moon Freestyle element this anxious limbo.
He now has indefinite depart to stay. However this artist’s strengths stay wrapped up in his uncertainties. There’s typically little incentive for younger black males to point out vulnerability, however Berwyn doubles down on loneliness, his want for love, his self-medication with weed and, on Fallacious Ones, the ache of being betrayed by a detailed good friend. In addition to vignettes of dwelling in his automotive, that is an artist who can bang out grit-free ballads too: To Be Liked is the form of track Radio 1 may hammer, not simply 1Xtra.