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WILEY – Treddin on Thin Ice

Treddin on Thin Ice

“Watch this place / I’m setting the pace like Dizzee,” U.K. grime’s number-two man brags on his debut’s title track. But producer/MC Wiley actually mentored the pre-fame Rascal, and here he matches him, sing-song hook for wobbling keyboard line. “Pies” is both an ultramodern nursery-rhyme rewrite and the best sex-as-baked-goods metaphor since Warrant’s heyday. And on “Special Girl” and “Next Level,” he rewires ’80s R&B as lustily as Kanye West or MF Doom. Who’d have figured we’d get two great U.K. hip-hop albums in a year?

Grade: A-