Famous Last Words
For nearly 20 years, Tottenham rapper CASISDEAD has thrived in the shadows. In the mid 2000s, he shared tales of street dealing across gritty grime instrumentals as CAS or Castro Saint, before reemerging in 2013 under the CASISDEAD moniker—his true identity still a mystery—with a thrillingly dystopian edge and ’80s-inspired sound packed with insidious, driving synths. Famous Last Words arrives as the fulfillment of this decade-long world-building. Early chapters (including 2016 single “Before This,” and 2021’s “Boys Will Be Boys”) are weaved into this 23-track debut, with CAS in full embrace of the darkness within. He’s “sneaking past the concierge…hopin’ there ain’t a search” (on “Loosin’”), or holding suicidal thoughts as ego outbursts fold into shimmering keys and soaring Connie Constance hooks (on “Marilyn”). It’s a deeply immersive listen—with even the interludes delivering dreamy, neon-lit borders with CAS, more anti than hero, stalking each frame. Elsewhere, London beatsmith The Purist retools the ’80s soul vibe of Mtume for a sticky-sweet late intermission (“Sugar Free”) after CAS plots a stunningly graphic tale of lust and deceit-filled dealings with a London call girl (“Pat Earrings”) and before Neil Tennant (of the Pet Shop Boys) steals the show for a showstopping closer (“Skydive”). CAS proves his lurid world of vice provides dark pleasure at every turn.