Who Needs Actions When You Got Words is the debut album by British rapper and songwriter Plan B. The title of the album derives from a line in the Meat Puppets song Plateau, famously covered by Nirvana on their 1994 album MTV Unplugged in New York. The album reached and peaked at #30 on the UK Albums Chart when it was released in June 2006. It received very favourable reviews from critics in the hip-hop, indie and mainstream communities. In 2006, Q Magazine rated the album 64th in their 100 Best Albums of 2006. In February 2010, about 3 and a half years after its release the album was certified Silver by British Phonographic Industry for selling over 60,000 copies. The LP version of the album was released as a double-12" vinyl and bonus 7" vinyl, containing 14 tracks in total. Some tracks are in a slightly different order than the standard release, and the LP also includes "Breakdown", and The Earlies version of "Sick 2 Def", in place of the standard version. It does not include "Everyday".
Plan B (aka Ben Drew) must be David 'Dave' Cameron's worst nightmare. The East London-born rapper utters the 'c'word within 10 seconds of his debut album, and laces his rap with references to anal rape, parental abuse, honour killing and biros in eyeballs...
With an acoustic guitar as his USP, and an attitude that pitches him somewhere between Mike Skinner and Eminem, those of a liberal persuasion will consider Drew a true reflection of the capital's meanest streets. A verbose white rapper whose penchant for violent language belies a well-honed conscience.
At times, this approach works. The single "Sick 2 Def" is a genuinely arresting set piece, an open sore of a track, spewing raw disgust. The other high point is "Where Ya From?", arguably the sharpest anti-Gangsta rant to come from these shores.
Unfortunately, these two-moments aside, Drew's bleakness (and voice) soon begin to grate - the shock value runs out all too soon, even before we reach the nadir of Prodigy-sampling "No Good!", the mawkish "Mama" and the imagination bypass that is "Charmaine".
Like spending an hour at Speakers Corner, Who Needs Action... starts off illuminating, but ends up banal. A bit of a one-trick pony. Time for Plan C. User Comments