Monday, December 02, 2019

DJ Clif "US Connexion" (Album Stream)


A 19-track production album from DJ Clif representing out of Montfermeil, France. The project features 90s style production and a grip of underground's hottest spitters like Reks, Napoleon Da Legend, Dirt Platoon, Recognize Ali, The Absouljah, Raf Almighty, Ruste Juxx, UG (Cella Dwellas) and more. Give this one a thorough listen, it's got solid beats, sharp cuts and biting lyrics.

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Pete Rock & CL Smooth "The Main Ingredient" (25th Ann. Mix)


This month marks the 25th anniversary of Pete Rock & C.L. Smooth's second (and final) full-length LP, 'The Main Ingredient.' Following in the footsteps of 1992's 'Mecca and the Soul Brother,' the album comprises tracks built from densely layered samples, frequently previously unsampled jazz fusion cuts mixed with crisp drums and short vocal snippets plundered from well-known '80s/'90s hip-hop tracks. Use of a number of go-to tracks defines the sound of the album and the presence of vocal samples from Biz Markie and Big Daddy Kane in particular is a key ingredient in the album's sonic palette. In celebration of the album's 25th year, Wax Poetics partnered once again with WhoSampled to present this mixtape of album tracks, alt versions, interview snippets, and of course original sample material, mixed by Chris Read. Yessir, check it out below...

Monday, November 18, 2019

Gang Starr "One Of The Best Yet" (Album Stream)


Legendary Hip-Hop duo Gang Starr has released released their seventh and final studio album, their first since 2003, 'One Of The Best Yet.' The first single, "Family & Loyalty", features J. Cole, with a video directed by Hip-Hop Legend Fab 5 Freddy. The album features previously unreleased vocals from lyricist Guru [who passed away in 2010] and new, original production from DJ Premier. The project is 16 tracks long, and features Q-Tip, Talib Kweli, M.O.P., Group Home, Royce da 5'9", Jeru the Damaja, Freddie Foxxx, J Cole, and more. Please PURCHASE 'One Of The Best Yet' ASAP!



Original street work art, photo by Mr. Krum.

Thursday, November 14, 2019

Take It Personal Podcast "Nas Vs. Jay-Z"


When the Take It Personal crew decided to tackle the greatest hip-hop battle of all-time, they knew it had to be special. It was important to them to re-create the magic and the memories and celebrate two of the most decorated veterans in hip-hop. They contend that this epic episode plays like a Scorsese film, and I agree. But, unlike most films, this gladiator battle has 4 acts. Each mix has been carefully curated to bring out the best in each opponent. They found a way to breathe new life into this battle of rap dominance and New York supremacy. From the little nuances, sound bytes, samples and scratching throughout this episode, if you don't get chills, you might not have a pulse. Take It Personal covers the battle of Nas. vs. Jay-Z like never before. Whether you're Team Nas or Team Jay-Z, we guarantee you moments where you'll feel conflicted, startled and even celebratory. So much goes into making these types of shows, so, please continue to spread the word, share these episodes and support Take It Personal Radio, but first, enjoy their Nas vs. Jay-Z battle.

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

94 State Of Mind (Mixed by Its Overture)


"A musical tapestry of rap in New York circa 1994." Presented by UpNorthTrips and mixed by the ever-talented DJ, Its Overture. The quick-mix features joints from Nas, Mic Geronimo, Artifacts, Brand Nubian, Black Moon, Ghostface & Method Man, Ill Al Skratch, Main Source, Funkdoobiest, Organized Konfusion, Redman, Beastie Boys, The Beatnuts, Raekwon, Boogiemonsters, Keith Murray, Big L, Channel Live, Gang Starr, Fugees, and lots more. Artwork by Rhek. Listen below...

Thursday, October 31, 2019

Apollo Brown "Sincerely Detroit" (Album Stream)


Detroit has an indelible legacy in hip-hop. From artists like J Dilla to Black Milk, from Denaun Porter to Apollo Brown, Detroit's music has a sound unlike any other. When Apollo Brown set out to create the tribute to his home, he knew he needed to do the city justice. Featuring over fifty Detroit artists, Apollo Brown’s new double disc album, “Sincerely, Detroit,” is a love letter to the culture. From different eras and different walks of life, veterans and newcomers alike lend their styles and deliveries to the twenty-one track album. Featuring artists like Royce Da 5’9”, Black Milk, Trick Trick, Elzhi, Slum Village and many, many more, “Sincerely, Detroit” is a nearly comprehensive look at the styles and flavors of Detroit. While the world watches Detroit for influence, Apollo is back to remind people that Detroit sets a standard for others to follow and is a creative haven for Hip-hop.

Sunday, October 27, 2019

T. Eric Monroe "Rare & Unseen Moments Of 90's Hip-Hop" (Books)


T. Eric Monroe is opening his historic vault of 90’s photography to preserve and promote the legacies of iconic personas who shaped Hip-Hop culture. With 3 volumes of Rare & Unseen Moments of 90's Hip-Hop, the books feature thousands of intimate moments in music history. Monroe’s body of work represents a fresh and unseen perspective of cultural icons from the 90’s Hip-Hop Community, at a time before the internet, social media, and digital photography. A large majority of his images were never published and kept out of all commercial outlets, archived away for decades. This archive was safeguarded from public consumption… until now! Additional images below of Nas, Raekwon & Ghostface Killah, and the Funk Doc himself, Redman. Consider placing your order HERE and I also recommend checking out a nice feature in Juxtapoz Magazine for more info.

Friday, October 25, 2019

38 Spesh Presents "1994" (Album Stream)


To celebrate the 25th year anniversary of one of the best years in Hip-Hop, 38 Spesh has put together a special compilation titled “1994.” The album features some of the heaviest spitters in underground Hip-Hop right now, and they are all rhyming over classic beats from the year 1994. However, this isn’t a mixtape, 38 Spesh actually went and remade each beat and added his own unique flavor. Listen to RJ Payne, Elcamino, Daniel Son, Eto, Rasheed Chappell, Grafh, Planet ASia, Hus Kingpin and Griselda's Conway the Machine & Benny The Butcher + more, streaming below...

Tuesday, October 08, 2019

Common "Resurrection" (25th Anniversary Mix By Chris Read)


This weekend marked the twenty-fifth anniversary of Common‘s classic sophomore LP Resurrection. The follow-up to his 1992 debut, Can I Borrow a Dollar?, the album is produced almost entirely by No I.D., with contributions from Ynot. With a heavy reliance on jazz, samples on the LP come from the likes of George Benson, Freddie Hubbard, and the the Modern Jazz Quartet among others. The album spawned two popular singles, the timeless ode to hip-hop’s ever-changing nature, “I Used to Love H.E.R,” and the Ahmad Jamal–sampling title track, “Resurrection.” In celebration of the album’s landmark anniversary, Wax Poetics teamed up with WhoSampled to present this exclusive mixtape of album tracks, alt versions, interview snippets, and of course sample material used in the making of the album. Once again, mixed by the talented Chris Read. Check it out below! Track list.

Monday, September 23, 2019

Skyzoo & Pete Rock "Retropolitan" (Album Stream)


Retropolitan includes 12-tracks, all produced by Pete Rock, with features from Styles P, Benny The Butcher, Conway, Westside Gunn, Elzhi, and Raheem DeVaughn. It is more than an album of beats. & rhymes. It’s two generations of legendary native New Yorkers putting it down and pulling no punches. Skyzoo & Pete Rock use this album to create a love letter and a wakeup call to the city, as they have witnessed its culture stripped away layer-by-layer. - via Mello Music Group

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Take It Personal Podcast "A Jazz Thing"


On Episode 51 of the Take It Personal Podcast, they pay homage to Jazz music. There is no Hip-Hop without this great artform. They've got joints from Digable Planets to De La Soul, as well as Freestyle Fellowship, Blackalicious, Madkap, Organized Konfusion, Sound Providers, Damu The Fudgemunk, the Artifacts, Buckshot LeFonque and Siah & Yeshua DapoED, just to name a few. Visit their website for the official track list for each episode and some brand new merch options. The homie Philaflava closes it out with a quote from the late great, Gifted Unlimited Rhymes Universal, "Jazz ain't the past, this music's gonna last. And as the facts unfold, remember who foretold!" 

Saturday, August 31, 2019

Take It Personal Podcast "Ice Cube Tribute"


"Ice Cube released 3 consecutive classic albums, 4 if you want to count his EP (Kill at Will). And it’s not like he just put out consecutive classics like Redman, Scarface, Jay-Z or ATCQ, I’d argue that AmeriKKKa’s Most Wanted and Death Certificate are the TWO best back-to-back debut and sophomore releases by any rapper, ever. The magnitude of those releases can’t properly be articulated. They were flawless. They were influential. The had this tremendous impact too, and not just in hip-hop, but in the world we live in. These album helped mold us, even shape the way we think about certain things. It gave us insight on issues we had no idea about. Ice Cube, like Slick Rick, was as fantastic storyteller and his ability to carry a story was truly special. The Predator is classic material, but not in the same vein as the previous efforts. Lethal Injection was the last really great Cube album. I know nostalgia is a muthafucka and we always have a soft spot for our favorites but if we’re being honest with ourselves, the Ice Cube we knew and loved had taken a great detour after 1993. After his movie dominance, it only made sense Hollywood would take him away from music, which explains why his next album didn’t drop until half a decade later. You have great rappers but if they don’t have the right producer their work can fall on deaf ears (see what I did there?). The Bomb Squad and Sir Jinx were monumental in making Ice Cube as great as he was during this era. If he isn’t among your top 10 rappers of all-time, you either don’t know or simply forgot. After you listen to our Ice Cube Tribute Mix, you’ll have no other choice but to include him in your list." Props to Philaflava, DJ 360 and Kevlar, check out their latest episode below.

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

DJ Filthy Rich "Creep Wit Me" (25th Anniversary Mix)


Here's the official Creep Wit Me 25th Anniversary Mix by DJ Filthy Rich - Hosted by Ill Al Skratch and featuring an exclusive song called 'Learn Today'. Filthy Rich adds, "When the sun's out and summer rolls around each year, there's a few things I gotta play... 'Summertime' by Jazzy Jeff & Fresh Prince, Lost Boyz 'Lifestyles...' LP, and Ill Al Skratch's 'Creep Wit Me' album. The Brooklyn-Uptown connection of Mr. Rhaspy, Al Skratch (Washington Heights, NYC) and Big Ill The Mack (Flatbush, Brooklyn) effortlessly rhyme back and forth, dropping fun lyrics over dope beats (courtesy of producers LG The Experience & LoRider). On this mix you'll find their album cuts, some unreleased tracks, and my own custom blends." Check out their unique brand of laid back rhymes with a vaguely menacing edge, as they were originally described in their "Next" feature in Vibe Magazine back in '94. Listen to the DJ Filthy Rich mix below. Updated: New link added.

Monday, August 12, 2019

Professor P & DJ Akilles "Remember" (Album Stream)


Remember is the brand new 10-track LP from the Swedish duo Professor P and DJ Akilles. Big fan of their past work and have been really looking forward to this release, as well. They delivered yet again with insightful lyrics, classic vocal samples and sharp cuts over solid production. The LP features guest appearances by Lil Fame and Defari and has been released on 12" gold vinyl, packaged in a heavyweight gatefold sleeve. Don't lose sight of why we all fell in love with Hip-Hop in the first place, check out Remember with Professor P & DJ Akilles. Order the LP HERE.

Thursday, August 08, 2019

Me & Styles P (An Interview From 2009)


About 10 years ago, I had the honor of chopping it up on the phone with Styles P for an interview. It was around the time Jada was dropping “The Last Kiss,” because we talked a bit about that album, but it wasn’t a promo thing, just two guys discussing Hip-Hop. Right off the bat, he made his position clear, saying, “I'm a blue collar MC.” He was proud (and reflective) on the fact that he was alive, and that he was more than "relevant" in a culture that’s been holding him down since 1995. I asked him to help me understand better what “The Ghost” meant to him - he paused and said, “being in the zone; a different space; having an open mind towards things that others don’t; using your third eye; a feeling of being here before and knowing you are gonna be here later” and while it wasn’t necessarily crystal clear, I understood that he was speaking to a duality that represents the man he is in life and in music. To a degree, that feeling of being a Gangster & a Gentleman.


There was a calmness about him, but there wasn’t a point where I'd lost sight of the fact that this was one of the hardest living eMCees in Hip-Hop. When the conversation shifted to image and the youth, he was quick to shoot them bail and say he was proud and happy for anyone to be able to make a living and feed their family. But, he added "It’s upsetting also that they don't know that rap is also Hip-Hop.” That’s an important distinction he was making. “They think they are just in the rap industry and they don't have the slightest idea of their past, the history, or how they are supposed to be an MC.” In the end, however, he remained optimistic, “You’ve just gotta stick to your guns and do what you do best. It's people like you - who are asking me these questions and love this real hip-hop shit - that lets me know the whole world ain't f#cking crazy, so I'm alright!” A legend and an OG, Styles P closed it out by advising artists to maintain a solid work ethic, and brought it full circle because as a blue collar MC, he leads by example. Go check out his Juices For Life company and support all his efforts: podcasts, mixtapes, albums, live shows, etc! Let's end this with a message from Styles P, the Ghost (Thanks for the love, OG)... Until next time ...

Tuesday, August 06, 2019

Kxng Crooked "Menace II Sobriety" (EP Stream)


I almost skipped over this short EP from Kxng Crooked, but this EP goes super hard! I owe thanks to the homie Rhymecology, whose strong review made me give it a listen, check it: "Holy shit! I love this project. The 4 track EP by @kxngcrooked is the first to give me chills in awhile. In an ode to Menace, I Got 5 On It, Gangsta Paradise and I Gave You Power, Crooked spits his multi syllabic and emotional fire that has me texting my boys like “have you heard this?” ...Like Elzhi did with Elmatic, he has a few lines that pay homage to the songs he is rapping over but he has his own style which is quatrains filled with 4-8 rhymes and raw passion that should WAKE these non writing mumble rap acts and their fans the hell up... The emotion and detail of Life of a Bandana is storytelling at its best. Menace 2 Sobriety is a beautifully written song which details the mind set of a man taken over by alcoholism, FkFame brings us back to the days of emcees rapping for the art and not the glory while Flowers reminds us to appreciate our Artists while they here... People who follow me pretty much like the same shit I do, so I recommend this..." Listen to Menace II Sobriety below...

Friday, August 02, 2019

Kev Brown & J Scienide "Drum Machine Tape Cassette" (Stream)


Low Budget Crew veteran Kev Brown has teamed up with J Scienide for a collaborative album titled Drum Machine Tape Cassette. The new LP is comprised of 13 tracks, with guests including my brother Supastition, Kenn Starr, Hassaan Mackey, yU and Finale, and more. This will be a contender for album of the year out of the underground, don't wait for anyone else to cosign it, just dig in!

Monday, July 29, 2019

Supastition "Sacrifice EP" (EP Stream)


After taking a long hiatus after the release of Gold Standard and a strenuous 60+ city U.S. tour, Supastition returns with the self-produced Sacrifice EP. The project features guest appearances from Blueprint and Yamin Semali as well as scratches from DMC Germany champion DJ Robert Smith. The project speaks on everything from learning to sacrifice your own dreams for the betterment of your family to the negative effects of attention and social media. Of course, there's some bars on here too! All songs were written, arranged, recorded, and produced by Supastition. Graphic design is handled by the artist himself. In March 2019, Supastition’s wife was unfortunately diagnosed with breast cancer. All proceeds from this release will help to cover the medical costs and other expenses accrued during the surgeries and hospital stay. If there's ever been a Supastition music release that needs your support then this would be the one. Your support would greatly be appreciated. For t-shirts, hats and limited edition physical CDs, click HERE.

Monday, July 22, 2019

Anti-Lilly & Phoniks "That's The World" (Album Stream)


"That's The World" from Houston emcee Anti-Lilly and Portland, Maine producer Phoniks is the third installment of their hip-hop trilogy which featured 2014's "Stories From The Brass Section" and 2017's "It's Nice Outside". After going from exchanging beats over email in 2014 to now touring the world together the chemistry between the two has never been more evident than on their latest release. Once again Anti-Lilly is laying his therapy sessions on record, speaking on his substance abuse, trust issues, relationships and coping with his parents divorce. But despite the negativity he touches on, the young Houston poet embraces the duality of life—taking the good with the bad and trying to find a ray of light in dark times. His outer pressures help craft the jewels he lays over Phoniks jazzy production as he showcases his mature, honest perspective across the albums 12 tracks. “Peace family, I just wanted to take the time to dedicate this album to you... This album is inspired by one of my closest friends who inspires me. This album is built off of my entire life experience to this point. Thank you for your patience with me, God Bless.” - Anti-Lilly.

Sunday, June 30, 2019

DJ Platurn "So This Is De La Heaven" (Mixes)


In 2003, the Northern California-based DJ Platurn made So This Is De La Heaven? The joint was a cut and paste mix, lasting over an hour, assembling the source music that gave the D.A.I.S.Y. Age its groove. Eleven years later, DJ Platurn returned with So This Is De La Heaven, Pt. 2, picking up without losing a step, and even the members from De La were taking notice: “Out of all the De La [Soul] mixes I’ve heard over the years, this is the most creative one. Let me take it back in time a bit and say this is ‘Strickly Dan Stuckie’. Salute, salutary, and salutations!” - via AFH. Listen below...

Friday, June 28, 2019

YBN Cordae "The Lost Boy" (Album Stream)


I knew nothing about YBN Cordae when his debut project hit my inbox, but the album's title, "The Lost Boy," suggested a depth to the content that peeked my interest. I was not all disappointed and it's proof to me that there is a lot of talent in the new crop of eMCees, but like anything, you have to give it a shot and do some digging. At just 21 years old, he reps out of North Carolina and Maryland with influences rooted in 90s underground hip-hop and tackles subject matter that ranges from death and addiction to love and success. There's an old soul approach in his self-reflection and discovery, as well as the backdrops to some of the music. No doubt there's a lot of mainstream reach but give this one a chance below. I expect to see it on year end lists.

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

The Alchemist x Mobb Deep "Built To Last" (Mix)


The 'Built To Last' Radio Show is hosted by Corrado and I Joe, each Thursday from 8-9pm on Radio campus FM in Toulouse, France. The latest mix in their series of tributes to classic emcees and producers is this Infamous Mobb Deep set, featuring production from The Alchemist. One of the best combinations in rap history, the chemistry that Alc, Hav & P had in the studio was near unmatched. You definitely wanna dig into the tags and listen to all the other quality mixes from Built To Last. Rest in Paradise, Prodigy: Hip-Hop misses your voice and perspective in music. Dig in below.

Monday, June 24, 2019

Ill Conscious "Logistix" (Album Stream)


Baltimore wordsmith, Ill Conscious, is back with his latest effort, Logistix. 11-tracks of superb beats and sharp rhymes featuring fellow lyricists Jay Royale, Code Nine, Recognize Ali, J. Scienide, Supreme Cerebral, and more. Ill Conscious is a superior eMCee and he enlists some of the best in the underground to join him on this record, do not hesitate to purchase it via Bandcamp. Listen below and dig into the tags to go back through his catalog of great releases if you haven't already!

Monday, June 24, 2019

Benny The Butcher "The Plugs I Met" (EP Stream)


The Plugs I Met is latest EP from the Buffalo MC Benny The Butcher, featuring Black Thought, Pusha-T, Jadakiss, Conway The Machine, 38 Spesh and production from The Alchemist, Daringer, and more. In this realm of music, this is certainly one of the best projects of the year and fans will definitely enjoy all 25 minutes of beats and lyrics. You can stream the EP below via Spotify.

Monday, June 17, 2019

"Ayo, fam, you listen to hip-hop?"


"Ayo, fam, you listen to hip-hop?" = an ongoing joke with those of us who spent years working at Fat Beats in New York City. It seems that joke made its way to North Carolina back in 2005 when Little Brother (Phonte, Rapper Big Pooh and 9th Wonder) released their second classic, 'The Minstrel Show.' In this October issue of Vibe Magazine, they took to the Virgin Megastore - another known spot for independent artists to hustle their music - and saw what kind of love their music would get in the Rotten Apple. Off the strength of the banging single, "Lovin' It," you would think it would have been an easy sale, right? You'll have to follow Pooh or Phonte on Twitter to ask them about that, this post is really just a reminder of old days and old jokes, that still resonate. So, do you listen to hip-hop? If so, take a walk down memory lane and pop this in your deck.

Monday, June 10, 2019

Rest In Peace, Bushwick Bill


It shouldn't be lost on the hip-hop community that Bushwick Bill was one of our beloved stars. His role with the Geto Boys wasn't necessarily the stand-out MC or writer, but his flavor was felt on the tracks he touched and his delivery + presence brought tracks like "My Minds Playin Tricks" to life for fans like me who saw the visuals and that's what catapulted that record to be a worldwide hit. His legacy carried beyond that and while his antics may have overshadowed much of his career, I gotta salute him and say that I hope Scarface and Willie D are able to honor him and the bond they had through music, however damaged it may have been in later years. Rest in Peace, Bushwick Bill.

Monday, June 10, 2019

DJ 7L "Saucony 1994 Aya Mix" (Mixtape)


My apologies to DJ 7L, an incredible artist and DJ, who put this mixtape together, because I didn't use the original artwork. I've never been the biggest Saucony fan, so while I'm glad that the Saucony Aya release coincided with a lot of phenomenal music in 1994 to inspire this tribute mix, I didn't wanna get caught up on that and instead go straight to the music. You can expect joints from Nas, Wu-Tang Clan, Black Moon, Beastie Boys, A Tribe Called Quest, the Fugees, Keith Murray, Lady of Rage, Craig Mack (R.I.P.), The Notorious B.I.G. (R.I.P.), Ill Al Skratch and more. Listen below...

Friday, May 31, 2019

Bozack Morris & J. Scienide "Popular Mechanics" (Album Stream)


"Popular Mechanics" is the collaborative album from Canadian producer Bozack Morris and Charlotte-born lyricist, J Scienide. J Scienide's 2017 release, The Actual Heat, was a slow-burn classic as he continued to diligently promote the project well after its original release date. That hustle gave fans in the know something to push and new listeners something exciting to discover, which is what the independent, underground scene was built on - digging and discovering emerging talent! Suffice to say, I'm excited about this release, as well, dig in below, and keep an eye out for J. Scienide's upcoming work with Kev Brown! The album is available digitally and on LP.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Noveliss "Metal Face Hokage" (EP Stream)


"Metal Face Hokage" is the latest offering from Noveliss of Clear Soul Forces. The 8 track offering features production from Def Dee out of Seattle, who was - and may still be - down with the Mello Music Group family. The Detroit spitter adds, "When I was on tour I met Def Dee in Seattle. He ended up coming back to Detroit at the end of the tour and we kicked it and decided to do a project together. MF DOOM is my favorite rapper so this is my DOOM inspired project." Listen...

Thursday, May 16, 2019

Thorough "Cassette Tape Malfunction" (EP Stream)


The Jamaica, Queens eMCee Thorough and producer CrazyBeatsP are back with their new EP, "Cassette Tape Malfunction." Along with the lead single, "Distortion," the project features a total of 9 hard tracks to dig through and like Thorough says, "Me and P make music one way: aggressively." If you came up in the 80s, you remember the cassette tape days, don't let that sh!t pop! Dope artwork, too. Listen to "Cassette Tape Malfunction" below and hit the archives for more releases.

Monday, May 13, 2019

Blu & Exile "True & Livin" (EP Stream)


After 2017’s 10 year anniversary tour of Below The Heavens and a b-sides/rarities release in In The Beginning many wondered whether or not Blu & Exile would ever reunite for a proper new release or if that year was as much a curtain call as it was a celebration. Putting those questions to rest, Dirty Science Records is proud to announce the True & Livin EP – as Blu & Exile’s undeniable chemistry is yet again put on display. “True and Livin feels like a spiritual call to all that have honor and truth in their being. It sees how present day and beyond is always trying to calculate or monetize what comes from God or what comes from an artist’s spirit, but it also recognizes the truth that is inside of Blu and Exile's music and brags about it, even in a humble way somehow. This might be the first hip hop braggadocio song that invites us all to feel the same about themselves as long as they connect to the spirit and truth that is inside this song and inside us all.” Exile says about the EP’s title track. Positivity and strength remain a theme on this EP, in Spread Sunshine and the stand out posse cut featuring most of the Dirty Science crew in Choosey, Johaz, Cashus King, Aloe Blacc, Fashawn & Blame One on Power To The People. Blu adds, “"Power To The People” is a call to the people, a call for the people to unite. Unification is power, power in numbers.” The lead single is amazing, order the EP over HERE at Fat Beats or below...

Friday, May 10, 2019

DJ C.S.P. "Still A Fan" (Instrumental Album)


DJ C.S.P. is a DJ and producer from Hamburg, Germany. His latest instrumental project, "Still A Fan," may have flown below the radar for some readers, but I'm definitely hoping to put you up game.... What we have here is 10 really solid boombap instrumentals, from a true fan of hip-hop. In his own words, he dedicates this record "to all the hip hop fans worldwide," and "without the DJ, hip-hop wouldn't be here!" Facts. If you've been following the breadcrumbs from past posts, you should be familiar with DJ C.S.P. from his sharp cuts on projects with KLIM Beats. You can stream the instrumental album below and follow that link if you're interested in ordering it on vinyl, too.

Thursday, May 09, 2019

Ghostface & Cappadonna Interview (Elements, Winter 1996)


Happy Born Day to the wallabee champ; the wizard of poetry: Wu-Tang Clan's Ghostface Killah. Taking it back to the winter of '96, an interview in Elements you may not have read before with Ghostface Killah and Cappadonna. Kicking the interview off, we learn that the Wu-Tang swordsman didn't vote for Bill Clinton, Bob Dole or Ross Perot in '96 - nah - he voted for the Wu! "cause I know that's the people that really really really gonna do the right thing." Also a nice shout-out for the RZA, "He's a genius! A psychiatrist. An underground dweller. He stay underground kid. Word up. Nothin' but bomb shelters. He's all in there like that just constantly doin' his shit, work or whatever." That's about all when it comes to insight, outside of "I gotta take a piss kid," that's groundbreaking stuff right there lol. Also includes a small interview with Cappadonna, info about the (bootleg) 12" "Drastic Measures," which some of you might remember and his debut album that didn't come until '98. As a bonus, one of my FAVORITE Ghostface Killah interviews, from Montreality, check it out... Ghostface drops some spiritual gems that show his growth since '96 (especially in interviews.)

Wednesday, May 08, 2019

GZA / Genius In Elements Magazine (Winter, 1995)


For today's celebration of #WuWednesdays, enter the Genius in the winter of '95; the final solo release, "Liquid Swords," in what was known as "The Year of the Wu"! Taken from Elements Magazine, a mid-90s magazine dedicated to hip-hop culture, published by the Student Radio Society of U of BC along with Discorder. Held down by Jay Swing & DJ Flipout, the magazine made its debut in May 1995 and was published bi-monthly until August 1996 for a total of 8 issues. Here is DJ Flipout's introduction to the article: "The Wu is the way, the Tang is the slang, and the Clan is the family. A family that will weather the storms and tribulations of inflated egos and the devious ways of success and fame. Not by using a secret technique, as in their style, but in using a well known facet of maintaining unity within a group of individuals; through the maintenance of respect and love for one another. Be alert and keep a vigilant eye open for the swinging Liquid Swords. Prepare to enter another dimension of the deadly sharp lyrical swords, this time in liquid form; to flow and maintain continuity flawlessly, while possessing the strength and power of ocean currents. But beware of the liquid swords as they can also be applied in solid or gaseous form while bearing the same potential lethality that has dissolved other inferior organisms in the past." Continue reading below for the full article with lyric breakdowns and jewels from the Genius like, "I'm sayin' ... any type of information that's beneficial, that's what I mean by knowledge of self. You see, knowledge means to know. Knowledge is also experience. And knowledge of self is to know yourself. You got to examine things for what they are, not for what they present themselves to be." - Elements (Nov-Dec, 1995)

Sunday, May 05, 2019

Jazzquarterz "Wayz Of Da Underground" (Instrumental Album)


"Wayz Of The Underground" is the brand new instrumental album from Swiss producer Jazzquarterz. Released on German record label Postpartum Records, the new LP features 13 instrumentals infused with his signature jazzy-hip hop style of production. Jazzquarterz didn't include a blurb along with the album's release, just a handful of shoutouts, including: Damu The Fudgemunk, Tru Comers, Bubblewild, Figub Brazievic, Klaus Layer, Devaloop and other talents you can find in the archives on this site. This has been the sound coming out of the underground, are you listening? Overseas labels are making a killing on the vinyl and/or cassettes + streams, dig in...

Saturday, May 04, 2019

Book Of Rhymes Podcast: Smif-N-Wessun (Episode 2)


Book of Rhymes is a brand new podcast, hosted by Donwill of Tanya Morgan and executive produced by Classic Material x Mika. After a successful pilot episode with Black Moon, the Book of Rhymes podcast is back and keep it in the Duck Down family with "the POWER MASTERS aka da original gun clappers aka SMIF N WESSUN aka Tek & Steele. Listen as we take a deep dive into their classic album 'Dah Shinin', growing up in Brooklyn and their new project, 'The All' and so much more." 

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

DJ Chong Wizard "Eclectic Relaxation" (Mixtape)


DJ Chong Wizard's "Eclectic Relaxation" is a proper tribute to one of the greatest groups of all-time, A Tribe Called Quest. It's been out for a long time, but I was searching for a vibe today, and this came to mind so I thought I'd share what was in my headphones this afternoon. On the tape, various artists come through to pay tribute, ie: Del The Funky Homosapien, Frank Nitti, Moka Only, Tanya Morgan, Junclassic, Bootie Brown, Dutchmassive and lots more. Enjoy this throwback tribute...

Thursday, April 25, 2019

Mobb Deep "The Infamous" (Review, Elements 5/95)


"Gunshot! Lighta! Daaamn! I can't say enough about this album. I just feel lucky to have peeped it early. Ever since "Peer Pressure" and "Hit It From The Back" on their last album, I knew these "official Queensbridge murderers" were on some other shit. As for "The Infamous," expect more of the raw from Prodigy and Havoc. If you liked "Shook Ones" Pt.1 & 2 then you'll love the rest of the tracks on this sophomore release from the Mobb. "The Infamous" is nothing short of phenomenal rhyme skills on rugged tracks with that undeniable New York vibe. Every track is right and exact but look out for "Your Beef Is Mine" featuring Nas and Raekwon The Chef..." Cont'd below...



"On the Abstract produced "Give Up The Goods" the Mobb flips some ill shit over the same sample used in LL's "Pink Cookies" remix. The second single, "Survival of the Fittest," is very reminiscent of "Shook Ones Pt.2" but nonetheless captures the true essence of Mobb Deep's outlook on every day life. Q-Tip also lends his production skills and makes a guest appearance on "Drink The Pain Away." Other tracks getting honorable mention are "Cradle To The Grave" and "Temperature's Rising" but to me "Trife Life" is the straight up shit. Don't sleep on this one - beg, borrow, or steel the ducats for "The Infamous." Definitely one of the best albums of 95. The Mobb comes equipped for warfare beware..." - Elements, May 1995 (CiTR - U of BC). R.I.P. Prodigy. "The Infamous" (4/25/95)

Sunday, April 21, 2019

The Eaze Up Show "A Tribute to Fondle 'Em" (Mix)


"For those that followed and listened to Underground Hip Hop Radio and DJ legends, Stretch Armstrong & Bobbito Garcia throughout the 90's, it would not have come as any kind of shock to know that both branched out with their own record labels, Stretch with Dolo & Bob with Hoppoh (w P.Nice & Daddy Rich) then Fondle' Em. The legend goes that the label name was just a gag but after The Cenobites (Kool Keith and Godfather Don) project rightly flipped wigs, Bob realized there was a new home for quality Underground Hip Hop records sold strictly on wax & his label's office and HQ were essentially his living room with Sandbox Automatic as the official website (it's still up online btw). A plethora of some of Underground Hip Hop's finest are featured, I hope you enjoy what I have selected and put together here and it was only right that I ended this tribute show on what to me personally is the greatest recording on the label." Listen to the tribute below...

Friday, April 19, 2019

Nas "Illmatic" (25th Anniversary Mix by Chris Read)


April 19, 1994, saw the release of one of what would go on to be recognized as one of the greatest hip-hop albums of all time, Nas‘s seminal debut, Illmatic. Following much-talked-about appearances on Main Source‘s “Live at the Barbecue,” MC Serch‘s “Back to the Grill,” and the release of the now classic soundtrack cut “Halftime,” Illmatic delivered on the hype with a compact ten-track offering helmed by the cream of mid-’90s hip-hop production talent: DJ Premier, Pete Rock, Q-Tip, and L.E.S.. Pairing crisp head-nod drums with an eclectic palate of jazz, funk, and soul samples, the all-star lineup of producers prepared a musical backdrop over which Nas delivers a no-holds-barred guided tour of life growing up in New York’s Queensbridge projects. Sampled cuts range from the timeless jazz of Ahmad Jamal and jazz-funk of Donald Byrd to the pop of Michael Jackson via well-sampled staples by the likes of Kool & the Gang. In celebration of the album’s twenty-fifth year, WhoSampled presents an exclusive mix of album cuts, remixes, interview snippets, and of course tracks sampled in the album’s making. Mixed by Chris Read, definitely check it out below...