Stoke-on-Trent rap duo Pale Red release sophomore single Empty Space

When rapper Dave won the first Brit award for Best British Hip Hop/Grime/Rap Act in 2022, it was a pivotal moment for emerging urban artists, making that music more accessible, shining a spotlight on the genre and inspiring young musicians to lay down their own bars. 

Here in Stoke-on-Trent, we have a really vibrant, close-knit urban scene, from the Britpop Hip Hop sensibilities of Council Cut, to the likes of LFE, Geth and Mick. And one of the youngest acts to step out onto the stages of the city’s independent music venues is Pale Red, who have recently released their sophomore single, Empty Space.

Following up on their debut Lost in the Smoke, Empty Space was recorded in Stockholm, Sweden with Olle Adell, and was inspired by that fresh environment and sense of freedom, alongside ‘meeting new people and leaving out stresses back home’. 

The beats are crisp, characterised by punchy drums and atmospheric synths to create a laid back melody. The vocals ride effortlessly over the music, delivering intimate lyrics with a sense of familiarity, like a conversation with a close friend, reminiscent of the storytelling style of artists like Loyle Carner. 

The chorus boasts an infectious singable hook with dreamy harmonies, with definite potential for mainstream appeal. There’s a fine balance between grit and polish, with a raw, authentic vibe and sleek production.

Pale Red explained: “Empty Space is a special song for us as it was the first song that we had recorded over at the studio in Stockholm with the very talented producer Olle Adell and this song was done in one night and felt very natural and I think this shows when you listen to the track. We tried to include the rawness from our home town of Stoke, and bring the experiences that we were having in Sweden and incorporate that into our new single.”

As 18-year-olds Taslim Brownsword and Joshua Pitchford tease, Empty Space is just the beginning of what they have in store. With more singles on the horizon and a headline slot at Piccadilly Party, Pale Red are quickly climbing the ranks of Stoke’s rap scene and are determined ambassadors for the genre.

Listen to Empty Space, released April 12, here:

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