It did not take long for Dizzee Rascal to release his second album - it was only a year since the Bow-born MC and producer released the groundbreaking Boy In Da Corner. You know what happened next: critical shock and awe both here and in America; winning the Mercury Prize; selling over 250,000 copies and scoring top a 20 hit with Fix Up, Look Sharp. But while all that was happening, Dylan Mills was writing lyrics, making tunes and recording the angry, funny, sonically-staggering 14 tracks that make up Showtime. "A year ago I was straight off road, straight from outside the off-licence. Boy In Da Corner is that perspective - back against the wall, only seeing what's in front of you. It was harsh, bashing around music. I've moved forward, travelled, digested a lot. That's why this album is called Showtime. You think I'm just hardcore, raw? I'm more."
"I'm in transition," says Mills. "I've lived a full life and I want to talk about it. That stretches way before Boy In Da Corner, that's why I ain't talking about planes or champagne or things. I'm curious of where I come from. I ain't completely detached." By now, most know the bones of the Dizzee Rascal story - the only child who grew up on a high-rise estate in Bow, E3 with his mother. He was expelled from three schools until he found a teacher, Tim Smith, who noted Mills' talent and let him use the computers at the back of the classroom. On leaving school, he wrote I Luv U, the breakneck underground smash that talked about teenage pregnancy over stuttering, end-of-the-world beats. First as a jungle DJ, Dizzy D, then as a pirate radio phenomenon, then as part of the talent-spouting Roll Deep Crew, Dizzee Rascal became the hottest name on London's grime underground. Dizzee Rascal continues to tear up all the rule books and set the music world alight with his raw talent. His thought-provoking lyrics, distinctively piercing and poignant delivery, and original production have made him one of the hottest stars of the urban scene, and yet one impossible to pigeonhole
Dizzee is not only currently working on his third album (due 2006), he's also set up his own record label - Dirty Stank Recordings.