I was in Prague in January 2017 and I was watching the music channels in the hotel when we got home one evening and I heard “Say Nada” for the first time. Up until that point, I didn’t really get grime or grime affiliated R&B. Then it started to make sense. I know by now it’s expected, but I liked that Shakka sings with his own accent and the language is local. “Say Nada” was the first time I heard JME. JME is a great example of how different accents create different flows and styles. I think people writing lyrics the way they speak opens the door for more of that. The English language has a huge amount of variation and it’s nice to hear things that aren’t made by Americans for Americans. The vibe is different as well. The American equivalent of this song would be in VIP sections and sports cars. “Say Nada” is weekday raving and Ubers.
The first thing that struck me was the riff though. The guitar fluctuates between levels of distortion but creates a bounce to the song. The beats in the verse are quite sparse and building into the hook where they lift up a level. I like towards the end of the song as it gets hectic. The layered vocals create a massive sound. I also love the lyric “My ex left saying she ain’t got the time, yo. I double take and pray the e-mail was a typo”. I like the idea that someone’s partner dump them via email.
You can listen to “Say Nada” by Shakka feat. JME here.