Dave has been tenacious in his pursuit of stardom. The Grime up-and-comer released Six Paths last year and collaborated with AJ Tracey on their banger, “Thiago Silva.” He’s a relentless MC that just continues to get better. His newest effort, Game Over, is a seven track EP that finds the young star more agitated, but more self-aware than ever before. Is this Dave’s best project thus far, or is the best still yet to come?
1.) 'Game Over'
There are intense vocal layers on the opening seconds. It’s reminiscent of Daft Punk, or the kind of layering Francis and the Lights would try. Dave makes it clear: playtime is over. He’s hard hitting with bars like “My life’s like a magic trick, all options are vanishing.” Elsewhere, he is sure that “Nothing changed here, same player different game.” With all of this pent up aggression on display in the opening track, you can bet that he has some heavy artillery for the other tracks.
2.) 'Question Time'
This track is a political jab. Dave doesn’t pull his punches once and gets confrontational about the issues he sees around him. He criticizes the current prime minister, denounces the former one, and asks a plethora of questions that need answering. From an American standpoint, it’s refreshing to hear a black artist from abroad hold up a mirror to his government. It reminds you that there’s a mutual struggle for justice taking place. Good, denounce Donald Trump; I expect nothing less. And to all politicians, we the people echo Dave’s sentiments, “Prove to us that you’re different, don’t promise me anything”.
This track is decent, but it isn’t Dave’s best work. He comes through with clever bars like, “And all my friends know I don’t do drugs, but when I stunt I want my ex to see (ecstasy).” The beat is decent as well. But for the standard I’ve begun to hold Dave to, this track doesn’t suffice. This is a track I would expect an average rapper to make, not Dave. It’s not very catchy and other than some witty lines, it’s not all that intriguing.
4.) 'Calling Me Out'
This is one for the party. Dave continues to demonstrate that he’s versatile. He can be political, he can reflect on his own life, and then he can make jams like this. I love the acoustic breakdown near the end of this song. This hook is incredibly catchy as well. It feels more authentic when U.K. artists grace dancehall vibes with their slang and accents. It sounds closer to Jamaica than anything Ed Sheeran has produced or Drake has tried.
5.) 'How I Met My Ex'
Incredibly introspective and deep. Dave reveals nearly everything that took place with his ex-girl. And it wasn’t in some shallow sappy way either. If you take away his celebrity, it’s probably very relatable for many people. The info is so detailed and the imagery so vivid that you become invested in this relationship’s timeline. It’s all over a plush grand piano that floats somber keystrokes. This track is golden. I might not blast this in traffic, I might not show my significant this, but I’ll be tuning in.
6.) 'No Words' ft. Mostack
This is a great jam. Incredibly catchy, once again. My only problem is that Dave seems to take the backseat on this one. He dominates the hook, but Mostack is all over this. I would’ve liked to hear him less. Don’t get me wrong, Mostack’s delivery is great, but I came here for the lead act: Dave. Regardless, this song will be on repeat.
7.) 'My 19th Birthday'
“If you can’t handle cheese how the hell you gonna be a grate (great)?” “And last time I got a rest they arrested me.” This is a phenomenal outro with bone crushing rhymes. Just like “How I Met My Ex,” Dave is so transparent that he’s see through. He concludes his thoughts with, “We ain’t playing games no more.” Phenomenal outro.
“My 19th Birthday”
“Calling Me Out”
Dave will continue to garner attention. Regardless, there’s a massive chip on his shoulder. Game Over is a deep sea exploration into the psyche of an artist that’s hungry for more, but tormented by what has come so far. Brace yourself for when he delivers an album. B+.