slowthai celebrates album release with fans, friends, family and Skepta at the Garibaldi in Northampton

slowthai and grime icon Skepta
slowthai and grime icon Skepta

slowthai’s debut Nothing Great About Britain was released to critical acclaim last week and while recent tours hadn’t come to his hometown, on Friday it was Northampton’s turn to enjoy the limelight and celebrate with its home-grown rap hero.

March’s Brexit Bandit tour saw slowthai playing to crowds of 1,400 people a night while his 99p tour stopped at some of the UK’s more intimate venues.

Having already featured in past videos, the Garibaldi Hotel was always likely to be the venue for his album release party

Having already featured in past videos, the Garibaldi Hotel was always likely to be the venue for his album release party

Having already featured in past videos, the Garibaldi Hotel was always likely to be the venue for his album release party and Friday exceeded all expectations.

The day started with an album singing session at Spun Out, where fans queued along Gold Street to meet Ty, get a copy of the album signed and probably as importantly, a wristband to the release show.

And while yes, the gig was streamed live by Boiler Room, for those crammed inside it was a night they're likely never to forget.

Family and fans were packed inside like sardines, generating unprecedented levels of heat and within a few songs, Ty had stripped down to just boxers and socks.

Towards the end of the show, champagne was sprayed across the room at fans

Towards the end of the show, champagne was sprayed across the room at fans

For most of the set, he stood either on top of his DJ’s table or perched atop a speaker stack.

As you'd expect, he tore through versions of tracks from his debut including Doorman and Crack with fans singing every word back to him.

On a number of occasions, he tried to silence the room to speak about the songs or about his journey to the release of his debut.

Frustratingly, a few chattering voices persisted frustrating the 24-year-old who was simply desperate to speak.

However, after a few false starts he eventually managed to convey just what the support and show meant to him.

Towards the end of the show, champagne was sprayed across the room at fans but amid all the frenzy, moshing and excitement, there were two stand out moments.

For his performance of Northampton's Child, (a track which beings at birth and charts slowthai’s upbringing), he got everyone inside to crouch down.

Having jumped down from the DJ table, he wandered briefly around the crowd before kneeling in front of his mum for the latter part of the song in what was as genuinely emotional moment.

Then, just as the night was coming to an end, the pub door opened and Skepta walked in.

The Mercury Award winning grime icon who features on slowthai’s debut had driven up to be at the show.

The Garibaldi erupted as a flurry of smartphone flashes illuminated the venue as the pair launched into Inglorious while fans set about capturing the moment in disbelief at what they were seeing.

slowthai is one of the most sought-after names in new music at the moment – garnering national exposure and acclaim from some of the most influential publications out there.

Whatever the future holds for him, his album release show at the Garibaldi Hotel on Friday will be talked about in his hometown for years to come by those who were there and you suspect by just as many who weren't.

Nothing Great About Britain is out now. It is available digitally via usual streaming and download platforms and via https://www.slowthai.com