Little Simz: A Curious Tale of Trials and Persons review – London MC finding her voice

(Age 101)

Endorsed by Kendrick Lamar and published on Jay-Z’s Life and Times site, 21-year-old Little Simz has already received more attention than most north London MCs. A Curious Tale concerns itself with the tests faced by a rising rapper: “This is the sort of shit that ain’t ever going to sell,” she says on Gratitude. God Bless Mary, which pays tribute to the neighbour who had to listen to her in her formative moments, includes the line: “I know it don’t mean shit to you if I go global.” It’s clear that Simz wants to put her talents as an MC to some use beyond braggadocio; at some points she is reminiscent of Lauryn Hill, at other times Eminem, or even Drake. All this does make the album seem very self-involved, however – even Mary is more of a device than a character. It’s a debut that leaves a feeling of an artist still working herself out. There’s time yet for that, though.

Contributor

Paul MacInnes

The GuardianTramp

Related Content

Article image
Little Simz review – an introvert on full beam
Showcasing one of the year’s best albums, the rapper is on impassioned form in a set that opens up from rapid-fire grime to lush funk and soul

Kitty Empire

04, Dec, 2021 @2:00 PM

Article image
Little Simz: Sometimes I Might Be Introvert review – rich, vital rap
Intensely creative as she discusses race, womanhood and family – and with a cameo from Emma Corrin – Simz’s fourth album feels totally alive

Rachel Aroesti

02, Sep, 2021 @10:30 AM

Article image
Mobo awards 2021: Dave, Little Simz and Ghetts top winners
Drill artist Central Cee and Nigerian pop star Wizkid win two awards each, as ceremony returns as a live event for first time since 2017

Ben Beaumont-Thomas

05, Dec, 2021 @10:00 PM

Article image
Little Simz review – red-hot ambition and technical flair
The rapper’s talent and drive are clear and her presence is engaging, even if her storytelling skills are still developing

Kate Hutchinson

18, Sep, 2015 @1:16 PM

Article image
Little Simz review – an unstoppable force on the mic
British rap’s leading woman uses her strength and stamina to transcend a somewhat disjointed show with her lightning-quick flows

Christine Ochefu

26, Nov, 2021 @2:00 PM

Article image
Little Simz: Stillness in Wonderland review – variety, agility and candour
(Age 101)

Isa Jaward

01, Jan, 2017 @8:00 AM

Article image
Little Simz: 'My friend going to prison tore my community apart'
It may by inspired by burnout and trauma, but the London rapper’s compelling third album Grey Area is full of defiant energy. As she says, ‘I don’t care who I offend’

Shannon Mahanty

08, Mar, 2019 @10:00 AM

Article image
Little Simz: ‘I’m not a UK female MC, I’m an artist'
She’s been tipped by Kendrick Lamar and Jay Z but the rising rapper from Islington is insisting on doing things her own way. And that includes releasing her debut album herself

Alexi Duggins

07, Sep, 2015 @8:00 AM

Article image
The 50 best albums of 2021, No 3: Little Simz – Sometimes I Might Be Introvert
Engaging with private, family and public life and boldly ‘taking the winner’s flight’ made the rapper’s fourth LP an artistic triumph

Jenessa Williams

15, Dec, 2021 @6:00 AM

Article image
Dave, Little Simz and Jamie Cullum win at 2020 Ivor Novello awards
Songwriting and composition awards herald politically conscious work including Dave’s Black, described as ‘important and eloquent’

Ben Beaumont-Thomas

02, Sep, 2020 @12:00 PM