Rat Boy - 'Internationally Unknown'

6/10

After releasing his well-praised and expansive debut album 'SCUM' back in 2017, the young Essex-based frontman Jordan Cardy aka Rat Boy was circling the world of underground hip-hop while blending it with nostalgic Britpop, helped largely to the production efforts of Blur and Gorillaz' Damon Albarn. But after a few years on the road, the emerging talent has found himself under the wing of punk legend and Rancid frontman Tim Armstrong, who has now lent his experience and talent to the sound of this follow-up 'Internationally Unknown', a record that sees him explore even more of his explosive demeanour.

From the start, it is clear as to how much his sound has moved on since his debut. With more distortion in the guitars and a more abrasive attitude throughout, 'Internationally Unknown' aims for him to make even more noise and ruckus on his return. Yet despite its clear intentions for him to grow and experiment as an artist, there does seem to be a lack of focus in his songwriting, opting simply for energy over interest. This leaves his direction falling short of what we were hoping for based on the singles we heard so far, but still manages to peek your interest from time to time.

Overall, 'Internationally Unknown' is not the most well-rounded return we could have hoped for, but still manages to pack itself with the occasional bolt of tenacity and intrigue. It seems that his attempts to become more diverse and eclectic has left us with a rather disjointed and unconnected return, but not without its better moments.

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