group from Britain
. More accurately, from England
. Even more accurately, from Birmingham
In essence, The Streets is Mike Skinner, an English producer and rapper who has been trying to break into the garage and hip hop scene for many years, under various pseudonyms. With The Streets, he has finally made it into the limelight, and his original interpretation of garage has caused great interest.
Skinner sees himself primarily as a producer, and in this respect he is no doubt very talented. However, the main factors causing the media frenzy for The Streets have nothing to do with production values. Instead, it is the lyrics, which describe English suburbia in unashamedly English tones that are causing the furore. The Streets are not mimicking the American sound, and in this respect are almost unique among British hip hop and garage musicians.
The other reason for the media’s interest is Skinner himself. An average looking white male from Birmingham, who has decided to reinvent the UK garage scene? Who does this guy think he is? Surprisingly though, the hacks haven't gone for Skinner yet. There seems to be very little to criticise. He’s just an ordinary bloke, who likes taking drugs, likes going out dancing at the weekend, and during the week likes making music. What’s not to like?
For more information, see http://www.the-streets.co.uk