Saturday, May 26, 2018

Some Promo Pieces of Nas From My IG

Even when I go long patches of time without updating this site, I still post rather consistently onto my IG page, so if you're not following ... you should remedy that, lol. Perhaps not as much obscure stuff, but I do dig into publicity photos, promos, stickers & pieces of hip-hop nostalgia as often as I can. Above is a publicity photo for Nas & an original logo sticker. Below is the press kit sent out for Illmatic XX, which I may or may not have posted here before. Just some little artiFACTS here and there + a plug for the IG. Hit me in the comments if you'd like to see more posts (or less posts) about certain things, maybe it'll inspire some new content. 

Saturday, May 26, 2018

J Dilla 'Production Credit' Interview in XXL

J Dilla Jay Dee Production Credit XXL

I love this quote: "I say it all the time -- that I want a classic, so it's like a dream ... Hopefully the sound that I'm trying to get out there surfaces instead of being under the radar. 'Cause people thought I was out the game, but I haven't even reached my peak yet. So, I'm definitely back at it." His sentiments equally inspire and sadden me. That drive and hunger ... to be heard, to impact a culture; for success and for listeners to hear what you hear in your own head; that's an inspiring message. It saddens me because what we know today is that he passed away probably never feeling like he reached his peak and a lot of people didn't give him his flowers while he could smell them. It took a man's life, literally, to inspire a culture but then outsiders tried to turn his legacy into a t-shirt. It irks me that we neither appreciate the geniuses and the forward-thinkers of our culture in their time, nor do we know how to properly honor their legacies. Rest In Peace, J Dilla. 

Saturday, May 26, 2018

Icon Curties "Modus Operandi" (Album Stream)

I'm diggin' this new project from Italian producer, Icon Curties, called "Modus Operandi." The album is being released on CD & Vinyl via Tuff Kong Records, which is also releasing my brother MoSS' production album, "Marching to the Sound of My Own Drum," on vinyl. The album features talented spitters: Recognize Ali, Daniel Son, Hus Kingpin, SmooVth, Estee Nack, Code Nine, Saipher Soze, Rozewood, Anklejohn, and more. Driven by hard drums and moving samples, you should throw this in your car and take it for a ride, you won't be disappointed. Album stream below via Bandcamp; cop the physicals HERE & definitely get the MoSS album on LP + 7" while you're there!

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Royce Da 5'9" "Book of Ryan" (Album Stream)

Let me start with: Royce Da 5'9"'s new album (his 7th solo studio album), "Book of Ryan," is thee best album of 2018. I wanna go on the record with that now, because it will take an "Illmatic" to shift this out of the number one spot. When I heard the S-1 produced "Tabernacle" some years back, I knew there was a shift and Royce was coming for his spot in hip-hop history as one of the most underrated, most consistent and hardest working MCs we have in the culture ... and, more than that, he was going to speak his truth. Set up like a book, the lyrics and visuals match flawlessly. It's tracks like "Boblo Boat" and the track of the year "Cocaine" that make me say "that man is different." We absolutely have aliens in our culture; their talents are just too supernatural, lol. Sure, there are lots of incredible features and the tracks are produced by some of the best in the biz, but it's Royce - front and center - who commands the praise, and I'll leave it there. Dig into it below. You can and should purchase physical copies of this album, for replay and support.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Confidence "Produce What You Feel" (Instrumental Album)

"The evolution of Confidence started 17 years ago when he was lucky enough to get his hands on the MPC 2000xl to start creating boom bap hip hop. “Produce What You Feel” embodies the progression and versatility of beats that will take you on a journey through different musical emotions and feelings. The track list plays like a timeline, so you’ll be able to listen to the progression of all the hours and years Confidence has put into mastering his craft. As Rashad once said, “It takes work and focus to get heard and noticed." Listen to "Produce What You Feel" below...

Monday, May 21, 2018

Crimeapple & Cuns "Salud Y Plata" (EP Stream)

"Salud y plata, health and wealth, isn't that what we all want in life? Achieving that ultimate goal does not come easy though, it requires hard work and dedication to your craft, and that is exactly what Crimeapple and Cuns have done over the last few years. The New Jersey rapper of Colombian descent has been knocking out project after project, his "Metralleta" debut and volume 1 and 2 of "Perfect" have become true underground cults together with his latest, mind-blowing "Aguardiente" collaboration with producer Big Ghost LTD. On the other side of the world Roman producer has been building his name from the ground up with collaborations with Conway, Benny, Guilty Simpson and Big Twins among others. It was only a matter of time until the two would eventually cross paths, and we're proud to bring you the outcome of this collaboration with the "Salud Y Plata" EP. Crimeapple's killer punchlines and Cuns eccentric beats perfectly merge to create a picturesque soundscape, trying to bring the listener to experience how achieving that ultimate goal would feel."

Monday, May 21, 2018

Supastition "The Blackboard" (Deluxe Edition, 2013)

"The critically acclaimed 10-song project from North Carolina's Supastition. The Blackboard marked Supastition's return to music after a 3 year sabbatical away from the music industry. Originally released as a free digital EP, this is the Deluxe Edition digipak which contains two previously unreleased tracks. The project features the critically acclaimed, Yada Yada, the conceptual Best Worst Day, and the boom bap inspired “Indestructible”. The only guest appearances on The Blackboard EP are the DJ duo, Faust & Shortee, and German-based vocalist Dominique. Production on the EP is handled by longtime producers Marco Polo, M-phazes, Veterano, the Mighty DR, and Croup as well as Rik Marvel, Microphono and Dirty Art Club." On its 5th anniversary, listen below...

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

MC Shan "Hip-Hop Roughneck" (1993)

Bringin' it back at you straight from the Bridge... MC Shan dropped the single "Hip-Hop Roughneck" in 1993 after the Juice Crew MC switched to Livin Large Records from Cold Chillin. The press release says it was to be released on his forthcoming album "Penile Reunion," but that ended up being Shan's second single featuring Neek The Exotic, Snow, Kool G Rap & Diesel ... both ended up being only 12" releases. It'd been three albums & 6-7 years since his smash single "The Bridge" became a Queens anthem, plus the famous beef with KRS-One / Boogie Down Productions. To sum it up, Shan says "Shan was dead, but now I got reanimated / Had the buttons to push, but didn't know how to operate it..." I've always held Shan in high-regard, even on "The Bridge," which was originally just a dubplate of sorts for Marley Marl to rock at live shows, Shan dropped gems in the 3rd verse about mind elevation and straight positivity, which I always respected. We kept in touch in the early '00s, where he was still recording & releasing music; I think his last project was in 2017: a digi-release entitled "Bars Over Bullshit." To be respected & known around the world as a pioneer of this rap shit is no easy feat, his legacy is deeper than 1 battle. The bridge will keep rockin...

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

J Scienide & Bozack Morris "Capeesh" (Music Video)

A hard-hitting, boombap gem from Toronto beatsmith, Bozack Morris, and DC lyricist, J-Scienide. If you haven't supported J-Scienide's LP, "The Actual Heat," click HERE and also check out Bozack Morris' production album, "Loose Cannons." Below is a video for their collaborative effort, "Capeesh," directed, shot & edited by Mercenary Productions. Keep an eye out for a new project from J-Scienide & Kev Brown & the instrumental version of "Loose Cannons," which is sure to drop sooner than later. "Contains language which may be unstable for some listeners!"

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Bahamada x Built To Last Mix

Check out this fine Bahamadia mix from the "Built To Last" Radio Show aka "Conçu Pour Durer." Hosted by Corrado & I Joe, each Thursday 8-9pm, on Radio Campus FM Toulouse. Dig through their dope archives of shows and mixes, always classic material. For this addition, run through joints from "Kollage," "BB Queen," "Good Rap Music" and lots more from her impressive catalog. Peace to the Queen of Hip-Hop - straight outta Philly - Bahamadia. UKnowHowWeDu, click play below.

Monday, May 14, 2018

DJ Jazzy Jeff "M3" (Album Stream)

"Grammy Award-winning DJ Jazzy Jeff has been a bright light of creativity in the last few years, working with such burgeoning artists as Maségo, and others while continuing to showcase his exemplary craft as a creative artist. As of today, though, the Philadelphia legend has stepped out truly on his own with the final installment of his Magnificent series. M3 finds Jeff sounding free and funky over 15-tracks. Making the celebration even more fruitful, M3 marks Jeff’s first studio album as an independent artist. With world-class musicians from his PLAYLIST artist network, M3 includes contributions from Rhymefest, James Poyser, Stro Elliot, and so much more. While M3 is the last in Jeff’s Magnificent series, it is truly a kaleidoscope of sounds and textures that blend R&B, house, jazz, hip-hop, and funk. With the album touching on subjects we can all relate to (life, love, society and the music industry) - M3 is a project that truly has something for everyone. A look into DJ Jazzy Jeff’s creative process, M3 is not only a testimony of his sustained greatness but a strong and solid declaration of independence. 'For me, M3 represents freedom as an artist and in business,” said DJ Jazzy Jeff. “After all these years in the business, it’s liberating to finally be totally independent. Hopefully, I inspire others to take charge of their own destiny'." Stream M3 from the pioneering DJ and producer, DJ Jazzy Jeff below and thanks to OKP for the blurb and release news...

Thursday, May 10, 2018

DJ Rhettmatic "Loops, Chops, Beats & Vibes" (Instrumental Album)

"As you know, to celebrate my birthday every year, I always try to do my best to make some music & share it as a way to say thank you, but this particular project was a bit of a struggle... So what I did instead was use Pro Tools as my way of making beats this time. No drum programming, playing keys and basslines; just straight chopping up, looping, layering samples from records, cut and paste style....basically, on some Raw Sh*t!! It was more tedious & time consuming than my other methods of doing beats, but I have to tell you, it was hella fun. I just listened to bunch a records, recorded it, sample, chop, and however the final product came out, mistakes and all, this is what you're listening to right now. No overthinking, just went with the flow. It was pretty liberating. Anyways, as always, this is my way to celebrate another year on this planet and my humble way to say thank you to everyone that has directly or indirectly, supported, inspired, motivated me in one capacity or another. I am very thankful." Happy Born Day, Rhettmatic. Listen to his instrumental project below...

Tuesday, May 08, 2018

Nas 'Concepts' Mix by Vinylcologist

"NaS is one of the greatest emcees to ever pick up a pen and my favorite of all time. He's inspired me on many occasions getting me through some of the most difficult times in my life as well as continuing to inspire me to this day. I thought it would be dope to put a spotlight on some of his greatest conceptual songs ever." I can relate to that and definitely agree that Nas is one of the best with the concepts and visual lyrics. "The money's ya religion, sky's the limit live life / Numbers is big business, makes the poor live trife / The glimmers of hope provoke, those without dollars to dream / Through your existence become wealthy, knowledge is king." Dig into this mix below.

Monday, May 07, 2018

Awon "Beautiful Loser" (10th Anniversary Album Stream)

"This is the 10th Anniversary of Awon's first LP, Beautiful Loser. Don't Sleep Records is celebrating the release with new artwork and two remixes by Phoniks. The album was a coming of age piece for Awon that peered into his soul and took listeners on a journey through his thoughts. This album represents leaving adolescence and coming into manhood. Throughout the album Awon speaks on fatherhood, losing his friends and family, his love of material possessions, and basically trying to become a better man knowing he is a flawed individual. The first work of an artist is usually the most raw and personal and Beautiful Loser fits that description perfectly. It features production by Awon's longtime friends from The Soul Students Kameleon Beats, Albumz, Indelible, and Ak. The only features on the album are Tiff the Gift, Hamza Atoi, and Fiv who holds down the outro. This was originally released on May 7th, 2008 via Goon Trax Records Japan."

Friday, May 04, 2018

Children Of Zeus "Slow Down / All Night" (EP Stream)

First Word Records is very proud to present the triumphant return of the UK's finest Hip Hop Soul duo, Children of Zeus, with a double-header of brand new material. Children of Zeus exemplify the heart and soul of Manchester, UK's now-movement - but don't get it twisted - the vibe is universal, and they definitely ain't new to this. Two decades on from the inception of Broke'N'£nglish and Hoodman, Tyler and Konny have consistently, persistently held their corner, stayed true to the music they love and nurtured their own unique sound. Catch that 90s Bad Boy era vibe with "All Night."

Friday, May 04, 2018

Chris Orrick (Formerly Red Pill) "Portraits" (Album Stream)

"The Michigan ex-factory worker formerly known as Red Pill has spent the last half-decade documenting industrial decay, familial pain, and struggles with addiction better than almost anyone inhabiting this poisoned soil. It’s somewhere between Charles Bukowski and Michael Moore, or maybe Atmosphere if he couldn’t ignore the arsenic in the air. As Orrick tells it, “Portraits,” his latest album for Mello Music Group is a return to form. “I tried to strip everything down to what I think I'm best at: simple, concise portraits of who I am,” Orrick says. “Whether that be finding myself through self-portraits, portraits of everyday workers, portraits of the current political moment or portraits of myself told through the eyes of people I encounter daily.” From the corroded arteries of the blue-collar heartland, Orrick emerges as one of the most incisive and savage critics of Trump’s America. If the American dream is dead, he unflinchingly lays the blame on avaricious corporations, crude demagogues, and structural racism. There’s nothing polemical about it: just warm-hearted, sad-eyed, gin-flooded depictions of a life where there are few right answers but a litany of wrong ones..." You can stream the full album below.

Friday, May 04, 2018

Handbook "Reminiscence" (Instrumental EP)

"These seven tracks share an energy between them. They were written at roughly the same time (with the exception of the vocals, which came much later) and express a feeling of positivity and optimism. 'Reminiscence' is snapshot of a moment in time where I was truly happy and content. When I named the EP, what I hadn't anticipated was how apt the name was going to be. My life has changed considerably in the year since I completed the production and it really does remind me of a very different, and a very special, period of time. Luckily, when I reminisce about that part of my life, I don't feel bitter or that I have lost something, but I feel elated that I had the opportunity to feel that way. I've channelled the positive energy I had then into the person that I have become since." Props to Handbook for sharing this EP, I definitely enjoy it and recommend listening below...

Thursday, May 03, 2018

Kendrick Lamar "The Damn. Chronic" (Mixtape)

DJ Critical Hype presents The Damn. Chronic: a blend tape of Kendrick Lamar vocals over Dr. Dre production. This is a really well done, tightly blended mixtape. I could say a whole lot more, but this one definitely sells itself as a must-listen all the way through, so ... click play now! You can go back and find Critical Hype's Marco Polo & Torae mix and more on the net, do that knowledge, too.

Thursday, May 03, 2018

Daniel Son & FutureWave "Pressure Cooker" (Album Stream)

A fierce collaboration between Toronto MC Daniel Son & producer FutureWave entitled "Pressure Cooker." A rugged sound throughout with fitting features from Crimeapple, Saipher Soze, and more. The winters up in Toronto grow more unforgiving each year, and the darker, colder side comes out in Daniel Son's content as well. The 12-track "Pressure Cooker" is probably his best effort to date & with the sound in the underground the last few years, he fits along with the best of today's gritty spitters. I'm glad the audience for it continues to grow as well, music was getting too soft for a while there. Dig into "Pressure Cooker" below! CDs and Vinyl available via OfficialCratesMusic.