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The Ascent

11 customer reviews

Price: £5.25 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £20. Details
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Product details

  • Audio CD (1 April 2013)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: WARNER BROS
  • ASIN: B00B5JC01C
  • Other Editions: MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 70,868 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
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Product Description

Product Description

The Ascent is the eighth studio album from grime pioneer, Wiley. The rapper collaborated with a huge list of talent for the album, including Far East Movement, Kano, Skepta, JME, Ghetts, Griminal, Manga, Frisco, Scruizzer, Double S, Chip, Wrigz, J2K, Ice Kid and Megaman, as well as Tulisa, Angel and Emeli Sandé. The album features the UK number one single "Heatwave" (featuring Ms D), as well as top five hits "Can You Hear Me? (Ayayaya)", featuring Skepta, JME & Ms D and "Reload", featuring Chip & Ms D.

BBC Review

Life is rarely dull with one-man drama magnet/record factory Richard 'Wiley' Cowie.

The Ascent is complete confirmation of that: the idiosyncratic east London rapper leaked this album before its release after a dispute with iTunes, simultaneously labelling it his penultimate full-length missive before hanging up his mic.

Despite a somewhat scattergun approach to quality control characterising a sprawling discography, among numerous nuanced pop crossovers Wiley has always maintained the gritty edge that made him a grime godfather.

That contrast is referenced in equal measure early on here, with a big and bashy twosome giving way to a brace of wider appeal.

First Class, featuring predictably spittle-splattered contributions from Lethal Bizzle and Kano, and grime MC posse cut Skillzone keep street kids and longstanding followers engaged. They're a bitter one-two intro to the sweeter pills of Hands in the Air (replete with forgettable Tulisa hook) and drum‘n’bass-flavoured, Ms D-helmed jaunt Reload.

Ms D returns for sunny summer 2012 smash Heatwave, hamstrung slightly by its comparative relic status. Indeed, having released an album more or less every year for the past decade, Wiley's ability to force the zeitgeist is arguably both his greatest strength and foible.

While keeping his music fantastically fresh and of the moment, this often causes a speedy ageing process. In short, don't put a nine-month-old single on a Wiley album, because he will have sonically rushed three-quarters of a year ahead of it.

His loveable eccentricities also render So Alive as the album's awkward bastard son. Linking up with LA pop-rappers Far East Movement probably scores maximum record label exec thumbs ups, but shoehorning American accents next to Wiley's unmistakably British flow feels like washing down a hotdog with a pint of real ale.

Still, by now Wiley has earned a free pass to follow his whims from time to time, however incongruous the results. Granted, this is a country mile away from the most coherent album of all time, but you can only hope that The Ascent's title continues to apply to Wiley's deserved trajectory as a genuine genre game-changer.

--Adam Kennedy

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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
First of all, it is utterly heartbreaking (as a loyal grime fan) to hear that after this album Wiley will release one more album and retire as a solo artist. But by all means, Wiley will be leaving enough music for us to cherise when that day comes. In the past year alone he has released two albums and two mixtapes. But now to this album.

First of all, considering this album is aimed at a mainstream audience it is extremely pleasing, Grime wise. "Ascent Intro" I find to be one of the best songs on the album and find it utterly powerful. From there on, this album continues to be abundantly pleasing with songs "Hands in the Air" and "First Class" combining grime and pop excellently. Despite Wiley's absence from "Skillzone" the first half of this album is extremely pleasing to the grime fan in me.

Par "Heatwave", which I now find slightly annoying after months of constant plays on radios and television channels, the second half of this album remains to be nearly as pleasing as the first.
Admittedly, "My Heart" and "So Alive" aren't exactly the best songs on the album but guest features from international stars French Montana and Far East Movement is something to respect.

And finally, "Humble Pie". A song I fell instantly in love with when I first heard it on It's All Fun and Games Till, Vol.1. The combination of Wiley's introspective lyrics and Kid D's soulful production make this The Ascent's best offering and the perfect closer to what is overall a very great album.
Whereas Grime militants will probably only like "Skillzone" and "Chainsaw" (Both great songs), it can't be denied that Wiley has finally done the 'Mainstream Grime Album' thing right this time.
Long Live King Wiley.
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By Jakey on 2 Nov. 2013
Format: Audio CD
Wiley's new album, The Ascent, pushes towards newer boundaries and has an offer with nice tracks, most club-bangers.

The album has stars like N-Dubz singer, Tulisa to hip hop/pop stars, Far East Movement.

Songs like Reload and Can You hear Me are club-bangers whilst laid back songs like Humble Pie and My Heart are ones listen to whilst you are sitting on the sofa, relaxing.

However, the quality of songs on here feel like a mixtape or a EP which can put people off to start with.

Overall, The Ascent is a good album/EP/mixtape/bleh to listen to if you like pop and grime mixes. Just don't be put off by the music.
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By Brian leonard on 30 April 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I didn't know what to expect but i was pleasantly surprised. good few catchy tunes aswell as a few more focused mainly on grime. Well worth a buy if you're into wiley
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Jan Mulder "Jam" on 3 April 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I was excited by the look of Wiley's new album, mainly because of the line-up of all star guests, which enticed me into purchasing it on the day of release. Don't get me wrong, i've always been a fan of Wiley, but this album is very mix and match for me. There are some amazingly stand-out tracks, and others which are just not up to the mark.

ASCENT: The track is very much scattered and doesn't really seem to withold any direction. It has a very disorganised introduction, and the actual vocals are just lost in the blur of weird sound effects, synths and jumbled instrumentals. A very poor start to the album. (2/5) FIRST CLASS FT. KANO AND LETHAL BIZZLE: This is one of the more successful pure grime tracks, making use of the two featuring MCs well as adding some structure to proceedings. Saying that, however, from the moment it starts to the moment it finishes, it doesn't seem to want to go anywhere. It stays very safe, and very calm and collected, which in this case, is a disadvantage. (3/5) SKILLZONE FT. GHETTS AND CO: This track has to be one of the worst grime tracks ever produced. It just sounds like noise. Seven very weak vocalists with some poor lyrical ability served atop a once again scattered and crazy instrumental. How somebody high up top didn't refuse to release this is beyond me. I've heard poor grime tracks in the past, but this takes the biscuit. (0/5) HANDS IN THE AIR FT. TULISA AND ICE KID: Finally, the album begins to pick up with the appearance of N-Dubz's finest and grime trainee Ice Kid. Sticking true to Wiley's roots, yet moving slowly towards the mainstream, this is a fine mash-up of two genres. Tulisa's autotuned vocal works well against the backdrop of Wiley's verses, an ideal use of autotune. (4/5) RELOAD FT. CHIP AND MS D: Reload is the best track by a clear mile.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Good Cd but shame he postponed his tour & I can't make that date so that has annoyed me. I hate it when artists do that.
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By Jam on 29 July 2013
Format: Audio CD
Good beats and good uk hip hop album 4 stars out of 5 worth a purchase brought for £6 on amazon
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