No one has had a more dynamite year than Dave. The Streatham native exploded in popularity across North America upon the release of his latest project, We’re All Alone in This Together. While he’s fresh meat for North American listeners, his distinguished career is acknowledged all across the UK and Europe.
You’ve heard his voice in Top Boy, and later saw his whole persona when he played Modie. Or if that doesn’t ring a bell, his rousing duet with Alex from Glastonbury to the tune of Thiago Silva has over 33 million views on YouTube.
If Dave is a new name for you, don’t fret. Below is a list of tracks that you need to add to your playlist.
THE GOOD STUFF
Dave’s discography is kind of all over the place. From chill, slow tracks to hype club bangers, he can do it all. However, one consistent notion of his music is that he’s going to have wordplay. And a lot of it, for that matter.
Titanium was released in 2021 alongside Mercury as a part of a teaser for his last studio album. The tune features a melodic female voice which opens beautifully for Dave to deliver bars with gusto. Titanium plays on the idea of his success, showcasing just how far he’s come. The beat is slow and timid at times, although the bravado in his voice hides that.
Professor X is a Top Boy banger which discusses his intimate relationship with women. His character, Modie, carries a similar personality and stature in the show, as he’s known for being loud, obnoxious, and humorous in his delivery. This track is perfect for your everyday commute playlist, setting you up for a confident day.
Location and Samantha are both chill tracks with different backgrounds. The latter is a part of a longstanding series of Dave tracks which is about a female in his life. Samantha looks at the dichotomy of living this gangster lifestyle while maintaining a relationship with a woman, who, in this case, is Samantha.
Both J Hus tracks have a certain relaxing tone to them, although Location has slowly turned into a late-night club classic due to its overwhelming popularity. Everyone has a favourite bar from this track, and I urge you to find yours.
EMOTIONAL TIME BOMBS
A major part of Dave’s discography is what I like to call his emotional time bombs. These are tracks that are on the longer side of six minutes and tell a story. My 19th Birthday, Black, Both Sides of a Smile, Lesley, and How I met my Ex are all heart-wrenching examples of this.
My 19th Birthday touches on emotional topics from his childhood, love affairs, depression, and his mother’s influence. The song is just under nine minutes and features a beat switch about halfway through, which changes not only the emotion but the topic within the track.
On Black, Dave talks about the challenges that he’s faced as a Black man, while simultaneously professing his pride and love for it. It’s a track that exudes confidence amid topics that are distressful and tough to hear.
Lesley and How I Met My Ex are similar tracks in the sense that they tell a linear story. Lesley explores the time he befriended Lesley on the train from Norbury Station. The 11-minute track tells the tale of her tainted love life, which includes abuse and betrayal. In How I Met My Ex, Dave describes the passionate love affair and unfortunate shortcomings that comes with being a man in love. It’s one of those songs that has a lyric for everyone, similar to Location.
Both Sides of a Smile tells the story of an up-and-down love affair from both the male and female perspectives. It’s a terrific track that seems like it was targeted toward the torrid love affairs of Gen-Z individuals. The eight-minute track is a tear-jerker for sure, and one that you need to listen to.
While Dave is well known for his emotionally driven music, his upbeat tunes are in their own class. Money Talks with Fredo plays with popular trap beats and utilizes insane wordplay. The best bar from this track plays on his T-shirt being “eerie, no Henry,” a reference to both having a scary hard top and the Invincibles striker, Thierry Henry.
Clash is a banger from his last studio album in collaboration with one of his best friends, Stormzy. The tune popped off around the world, racking up just under 160 million listens on Spotify and 52 million on YouTube.
Thiago Silva is the final track from this list and easily Dave’s biggest cultural phenomenon. He called up a lucky fan at a Glastonbury performance named Alex, who came on stage in a Silva PSG top. He absolutely crushed it, sending the crowd into a frenzy and popping off after the fact. This is one of those tracks that is a necessity on your workout or party playlists.
Dave dresses with a classic UK streetwear vibe. Stone Island and C.P. Company are in abundance, with his looks ranging from full tactical to what I like to call, posh utility.
His on-stage looks are seemingly always from Stoney. In Toronto, he showcased the Supreme Mona Lisa collab the day before it launched, which made many of us in the crowd extremely jealous.
His obsession with Air Jordans is prevalent in his music and on the streets. Clash references that he has Jordan 1’s, 4’s, and 6’s, but all he needs is Jordyn Woods. His IG is chock-full of Jordan 1’s, which are classic silhouettes that seemingly fit into every outfit with ease.
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