Common Sense: J Hus does what he does best but takes it to another level in debut album

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Before its release, it was common knowledge that J Hus can produce hits for days with little left to prove outside of releasing an album, so his decision to release Common Sense was a logical one. ‘Friendly’ was one of the biggest tracks of 2016, as was ‘Dem Boy Paigon’ from the year before, adding to a slew of strong features with the likes of Stormzy, Dave and Nines and other solo efforts. The expectation surrounding the album was high, and J Hus delivered in Common Sense, doing what he does best, but doing it better than ever before.

The tracks preceding the album’s release were of a clear album-quality. The live instruments and all-round classic feel to ‘Common Sense’ allows Hus to introduce the album with a reminder of his rapping qualities, still managing to squeeze in a catchy hook ‘like it’s second nature’. ‘Did You See’ peaked at number 20 in the charts and racked up a tidy 14 million YouTube views in under two months, then there’s ‘Friendly’, one of 2016’s biggest tracks guaranteed to turn up any club upside down in an instant. Following these three anthems was a small army of yet more hits in Common Sense, making for a stacked and hard-to-skip listen.

The production on Common Sense allows J Hus to do what he does best whilst taking things to another level. There is a coherent feel to the project thanks to production from executive producer JAE5 and contributions from the likes of Show & Prove, TSB and The Compozers. The live instruments and afrobeats-undertone throughout allows Hus’ unique blend of rapping and singing to come to life in its best form, with those catchy hooks J Hus is known for featuring prominently throughout.

The lyrical content on Common Sense is J Hus doesn’t disappoint either, from snappy hooks to cheeky bars like ‘still ugly, but I’m not fussing/ J-Hus, even your mum loves it’ and ‘four figure outfit, three course meal/I put my money where my mouth is/ no two ways about it/let one n***a doubt it, twenty in the mattress’ in ‘Like Your Style’ and ‘Bouff Daddy’ respectively. In other moments, you hear him talk about chasing girls, becoming the man and being broke but not losing faith, but it’s not so much the what, it’s the how. The delivery of these lyrics are what adds that unique spin to it, as Hus inter-changes effortlessly between spraying harder raps and singing lighter melodies throughout.

As for the catchy anthems… where do you even begin? ‘Fisherman’, ‘Plottin’, ‘Did You See’, ‘Friendly’ and ‘Bouff Daddy’ are probably the strongest five, but such is the availability of anthems on this tape, the selection is varied. You could even argue there are enough are ‘singles’ on Common Sense for two entire projects, but by J Hus’ high standards, this is what we’ve come to expect, and he delivered.

J Hus doesn’t deviate from the style he’s come to master on Common Sense, he embraces it and delivers it like never before, making for a debut album that exceeded its high expectations. Put simply, Common Sense is J Hus doing what he does best whilst taking things to another level.

Buy Common Sense here.

Words by @Ajay_Rose