It's impossible to have a serious conversation about grime's new wave without mentioning Fatima Al Qadiri. Last year's Desert Strike EP set a high benchmark with its emotional depth and spacious, metallic instrumentation. The record even managed to surpass the incredible backstory: as a child she played a video game that depicted the Gulf War, which she had lived through the previous year. This year she's produced for rising Chicago MC Tink and collaborated with fellow grime monster Visionist; “Knight Far (Post-War Dub)” is her first new solo production in a minute.
The gunshots still feel like starting pistols for a human hunt, into an immaculate and mostly blank terrain with little room to hide. The healthy echoes and reverb have the steam of freshly paved asphalt; each synth has a feverishly polished brassiness to them, like a wall packed with old church bells, or empty napalm canisters. If Desert Strike is “post-war,” there's a palpable danger to Al Qadiri's sonic landscapes. Just because the tanks have rolled out doesn't mean it's safe to go home.