Wretch 32 jumps back into the game with an album driven by an emotional narrative, F R 32.
Wretch 32 is a big name when it comes to the British scene, you’d struggle to find someone between the age of 15 to 25 who hasn’t heard the name. In the past, the artist has created some commercial material whilst attempting to make a name for himself. When looking back at Black and White, the album where I discovered Wretch back in 2011, songs such as Don’t Go and Traktor had big name features such as Ed Sheeran. Since then I feel Wretch 32 has used his commercial success as a platform to push his music, this has allowed him to start making the music closer to his heart, with less of a focus on commercialization.
If you want to see the transition for yourself, Wretch 32’s ‘Fire in the Booth’ is a good starting point: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TPuobIil7-0
F R 32 consists of 12 songs, which sit at just under 44 minutes long. It also follows the evolution of Wretch as an artist, the album tracks are clearly an extension of the experiences that Wretch has gone through as a person. The use of wordplay in his songs have allowed him to weave in stories about his relationships, family issues, his current mindset on life, and what he wants from the future. The album has come around at arguably the best time for Wretch 32 with the current boom within his genre. In my opinion this record will overthrow a lot of its competitors, its infection melody and sincere lyrics make it a very emotionally fueled album, every song has a narrative which you can follow from beginning to end. I feel that F R 32 really allows you to connect to the album in a way which isn’t possible with other artists.
A song, which really leaves a long-lasting impression on me is His & Hers (Perspective), the song is just beautiful as it comes from both male and female perspective of a relationship. The bridge creates a break between the male and female narratives and creates a unique sound that combines so many varying emotions. This song alone makes the album for me; it highlights Wretch 32’s skill as a music artist and is a song you should definitely check out.
The album does have some tracks that drop off for me, although it has its strengths I don’t feel as though all the tracks have what it takes to be stand-alone songs. Despite this, I do think you should give the album a spin if not to check out the growth Wretch 32 has undergone as an artist, it should be to hear the story each track creates when you listen to the album.