Fredo: Third Avenue review – honest, gritty debut album


In 2016, west London rapper Fredo emerged as a need-to-know name – though he was in prison at the time and had no idea that his first ever track They Ain’t 100 was getting millions of plays. Since then the MC’s star has ascended, scoring a British No 1 last year with Dave on the triumphant, billowing Funky Friday.

Now on his debut album, Fredo delivers grit, authenticity and vitality over bangers, hollowed-out beats and dazzling keys. The lyrics are searingly honest and assured – whether he’s talking angrily about so-called friends who didn’t visit him in jail, expressing a sweet gratitude to his mother for dealing with him being “a bad kid”, or rolling his eyes about a schoolteacher who used to give him grief. Third Avenue finds an artist at ease with himself, and at ease with addressing his demons. The genre-melding production is perhaps more old school than his peers, and at times can feel a little clunky – but ultimately it adds to a sense that Fredo’s not here to hop on a trend. This is an accomplished full-length that, while not a game-changer, certainly slots neatly into the burgeoning UK canon.

Watch the video for All I Ever Wanted ft Dave.


Tara Joshi

The GuardianTramp

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