Heavy Is the Head

Stormzy - Heavy Is the Head
Critic Score
Based on 18 reviews
2019 Ratings: #229 / 737
User Score
Based on 361 ratings
2019 Ratings: #686
Liked by 7 people
December 13, 2019 / Release Date
LP / Format
Atlantic / Label
UK Hip Hop / Genres
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CRITIC REVIEWS

90
Clash
‘Heavy is the Head’ absolutely hits it out of the park. It’s the same winning mix of grime bangers and radio friendly singing as last time, but, crucially, it’s better at making sure they work together on the same project.
90
PopMatters
From career milestones to addressing grime beefs, to expressing the precarious position he finds himself in as a spokesperson for a generation of black British youth, a shorter album wouldn't do justice to these experiences.
80
The Guardian
He’s become so famous that even the Archbishop of Canterbury loves him – but this brilliant second album shows how difficult Stormzy finds stardom.
80
DIY

The labyrinthine complexities of human nature are explored here in all their grit and glory, but it’s the combination of Stormzy’s charm and his knack for storytelling that allows ‘H.I.T.H’ to glimmer with a universal appeal that will please both his mainstream audience and grime fans of old; an almost impossible task that he’s amazingly pulled off.

80
The Independent
Not only is it a drastic step up from his impressive debut, but it shows an artist keen to test himself emotionally, as well as artistically.
80
The Line of Best Fit

If Heavy Is The Head is one thing, it’s aware of its own worth. It doesn’t need me to tell you that.

80
The Telegraph
Throughout this album, he wrestles with the privileges and burdens of his success. The result wittily, emotionally and triumphantly affirms his position at the head of the British rap pack.
80
NME

Stormzy isn’t aiming to be the biggest name in grime, or UK rap, or indeed even be one of the biggest UK artists; Heavy Is The Head is him trying to go for everything and become the sort of culture-defining talent that only pops up a couple of times in a generation.

80
AllMusic

More enjoyable overall than Gang Signs, Heavy Is the Head is a well-rounded mix of toughness and sentimentality, and another rightful triumph.

80
Under The Radar

Stormzy delivers one of the most introspective and prayerful works of the year, solidifying his elite status in hip-hop.

80
The Needle Drop

Stormzy realizes his pop rap ambitions on Heavy Is the Head.

70
Pitchfork

While HITH sees Stormzy navigate second album syndrome with apparent ease, it also leaves open the question of where he goes from here.

70
Slant Magazine

The 16-track Heavy Is the Head comprises a mix of snapping bangers and reflective slow jams.

70
Exclaim!

A solid album but also not a surprising one.

60
musicOMH

The fondness for schmaltz gets a bit overwhelming, and the album is only great in patches.

60
Crack Magazine
It’s a solid album, but the fact it comes from a king means you’d be right to expect a lot more. Stormzy is still an invaluable symbol in British society, but you’re left with the feeling that he’s a symbol that’s been momentarily bent out of shape, the music just one facet of a vast empire.
Oreox4
75
This is a solid album. It has a nice sound to it. It has nice flows. And it is just a good rap album. Good stuff. The production is really nice to. It's a likable album in general

Big Michael: 67/100 (Decent)
I DO NOT like the flow on the first part of the track. It's like he can't write a full song so he writes half of it and stretch it out. The beat is a SLAP though

Audacity (feat. Headie One): 65/100 (Decent)
I liked it a lot at first but then it just kept going.

Crown: 83/100 ... read more
itscase
70
I’ve never really gotten into Stormzy’s music, or UK Grime in general. But after seeing Fantano’s positive review, I decided to give this a listen, and I’m pleasantly surprised.

The production on here is pretty good, and I love the shifts from genre to genre on here. This album doesn’t have one specific sound and I think that helps it tremendously. I also think Strormzy is a very good rapper. His more aggressive rap tracks are more interesting to me than the pop ... read more
j_cale23_
80
A friend of mine recommended I listen to Stormzy so I decided to give his new album a try. I’m pleasantly surprised. Normally I don’t really like UK rap/grime because I find their voices off-putting but man. Stormzy can fucking rap. The musicality here is diverse too, with elements of trap, R&B and dancehall. If you’re into bars and want something different to listen to, give Stormzy a try.

Best: Lessons, Pop Boy, Own It, Handsome, Rachael’s Little Brother, Vossi ... read more
Natedog
64
This is just another okay album that gets overrated by critics because the artist is from the UK. Audacity, Rachel's Little Brother, Handsome, Wiley Flow and Bronze are all worth a listen. The rest is either just mediocre or bad(Ed Sheeran).
DCCXX
75
UK hip-hop artists always seems to have great promises, but the actual projects they release always feel lacklustre and lacking focus. Heavy Is the Head is (mostly) the exception to that rule. Stormzy's heavy hitting, fast paced flows sound incredible over these rickety trap beats ("Wiley Flow", "Bronze"), and scattered throughout the album are straight bangers that really showcase the complexities of Britain's urban musical shift. Sadly, the album falters when it strays ... read more
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Track List

  1. Big Michael
  2. Audacity (feat. Headie One)
  3. Crown
  4. Rainfall (feat. Tiana Major9)
  5. Rachael's Little Brother
  6. Handsome
  7. Do Better
  8. Don't Forget to Breathe (feat. YEBBA) [Interlude]
  9. One Second (feat. H.E.R.)
  10. Pop Boy (feat. Aitch)
  11. Own It (feat. Ed Sheeran & Burna Boy)
  12. Wiley Flow
  13. Bronze
  14. Superheroes
  15. Lessons
  16. Vossi Bop
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Added on: November 19, 2019