Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Juice Soundtrack (The Source, 1992)

As hip-hop continues to bumrush the silver screen, the soundtrack is almost as important as the plot. Juice, a new film that stars Digital Underground crew member 2Pac and features DJ's Richie Rich and Plasticman is no exception to the rule. Hank Shocklee has assembled an all-star roster of hip-hop and R&B artists to contribute previously unreleased songs with positive results. Established stars like Naughty By Nature, Eric B & Rakim, Big Daddy Kane, Too Short, EPMD, Salt 'N Pepa, Cypress Hill and Son of Bazerk comprise the already-known hip-hop squad, and new comers MC Pooh and the Juvenille Committee round it out. While everything does not slam, there are some standout cuts. Naughty By Nature goes to work on "Uptown Anthem," a hard yet catchy groove where Treach rips the mic to shreds. For the title track "Juice (Know The Ledge)," Eric B & Rakim follow-up the R&B flavored "I Want To Know What's On Your Mind" (from the Houseparty II soundtrack) with the hardcore jolt to the head fans have been waiting for. The jam beings with a fast-paced, upright jazz bassline which is followed by a crackling kick/snare combo accented by a funky flute sample. Rakim goes for broke and delivers metaphors with a gangsta edge: "Shells lay around on the battleground / Dead bodies are found throughout the town / Try to put shame in my game to make a name / I'ma put it on a bullet and put it in your brain." - The Source, 1992. "Juice (Know The Ledge)" is my single favorite Hip-Hop record of ALL-TIME! I'm on the record with that.

Monday, December 30, 2019

Tha Soloist x A Dusty Cinema "Soul Cinema" (EP Stream)

Just a couple weeks ago I listened to Junoon by Tha Soloist and made mention that the stand-out tracks (to me) were the cuts produced by A Dusty Cinema. I'd hoped they'd do more work together and just like that here's his latest EP, produced entirely by A Dusty Cinema. It occurred to me later, however, with as much music as Tha Soloist has released, this could be the dozenth collaborative project they released, I obviously needed to dig back in the catalog and catch up, lol. I'll have to listen to the back projects and do a post on the best of what I've missed (mental note). Even shorter this go round, the Soul Cinema EP is just four short tracks, but Tha Soloist wastes no bars as he shares his personal narratives, self-reflection, and pays tribute to classic MCs along the way.

Sunday, December 29, 2019

Sean Price x Lil Fame "Price Of Fame" (Album Stream)

Sean Price & Lil Fame join forces for 'The Price of Fame' album on Duck Down Records. The 11-track project features M.O.P., Smif N Wessun, Rock of Heltah Skeltah, Conway The Machine, Illa Gee, and Guilty Simpson. The album is entirely produced by Lil Fame of M.O.P., and contains all unreleased Sean Price verses! Rest In Peace, Sean Price, one of the best lyricists to ever pick up a microphone. Don't sleep on Fizzy Womack's production neither, salute Lil Fame! Stream the album below.

Saturday, December 28, 2019

Nas x Statik Selektah "The Prophecy Volume 2" (Mixtape, 2006)

Released in 2006, this is the second collaboration between Nas and Statik Selektah in their mixtape series called The Prophecy. Volume 2 includes a handful of exclusives, remixes, and slept-on gems from the incredible Nas catalog. There's features with Jay-Z, The Game, Jadakiss, Papoose, Lauryn Hill, Common, AZ, Kool G Rap, Termanology, as well as Dr. Dre, Kanye West, Hi-Tek and more. The mixtape was advance promo for the release of Hip-Hop Is Dead and was subtitled "The Beginning Of The N." If you don't have this in your collection, it's a must-listen, so stream or download it below...

Friday, December 27, 2019

DJ 3rd Rail & AMC "Big L Mix, 2-15-99" (Mixtape, 1999)

DJ 3rd Rail & AMC put in work on their tribute mix to Big L, R.I.P. (2-15-99). The hour-long mix captures classic tracks, album cuts and rare gems from the Diggin' In The Crates crew member. I believe this mix tape was recorded soon after Big L's passing in '99, and it captures the essence of his music and the extreme talent that we lost far too soon. DJ 3rd Rail is the longest all-vinyl hip-hop radio mix-show DJ, based out of Chicago. Since the early 90's, DJ 3rd Rail has been holdin' it down on the radio weekly. Dig into the Big L mix below... much thanks to DJ Step One for the upload.

Thursday, December 26, 2019

Mick Boogie Presents "Unbelievable" (Mixtape, 2007)

On the 10th anniversary (2007) of the tragic passing of Christopher ‘Notorious B.I.G.’ Wallace, Mick Boogie and newcomer Terry Urban of the League Crew teamed up to release Unbelievable: A Tribute To Biggie Smalls, a project that many critics have called “the best Biggie mixtape ever.” Hosted by Sean “Diddy” Combs, this 100% creative mixtape features Biggie material remixed the way it was supposed to be done. Original beats and special guest appearances, as well as plenty of crazy remixes are abundant throughout the project. You'll hear lots of tribute mixes to B.I.G. on this site, but very few will be better than this one right here! R.I.P. B.I.G. Listen very closely below...

Wednesday, December 25, 2019

A Very Nostalgic Christmas To Everyone + Mix

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays, y'all! I appreciate you for finding this site - I know I never make it easy by promoting it, so if you've been following since my old websites OR just happened to stumble upon it thanks to Google searches, welcome ... For this year's Christmas, I present you with MICK (f/k/a) Mick Boogie's unconventional A Very MICK Christmas mix from last year. In his own words: "Like most people, I think the overabundance of Christmas music this time of year is horrible and cheesy. However… if you dig a little deeper, you’ll find that not only is there amazing holiday music, but there is LOTS of it. So for this project, I put together a retro, funky, soulful, classic mix of Christmas songs that will get you in the holiday spirit but also keep your head nodding the entire time. James Brown, Michael Jackson, Marvin Gaye, Minnie Ripperton, Stevie Wonder, Jimmy Smith, Charles Bradley, Sharon Jones… the list goes on and on. And for the intro, we even got the legendary DMC of Run-DMC to remake his classic holiday anthem: Christmas In Hollis.” Like EPMD said, "Don't Over Do It Holmes," make time and kindness be the best gifts you give this year! Peace.

Monday, December 23, 2019

DJ Revolution "Plastic Man" (Mixtape, 2000)

The Japan-only release of DJ Revolution's Plastic Man mix tape from... I'm not sure when? The net says 2001 but I'm not 100% on that. The tape features tracks from Kool G Rap, Positive K, Jeru The Damaja, Diamond D & Sadat X, Tragedy Khadafi, Group Home, Mobb Deep, Rasco, Inspectah Deck, The Beatnuts, Black Sheep, Double X Posse, Kenny Dope, Wu-Tang Clan, Ice Cube, Public Enemy, Eric B. & Rakim, Big Daddy Kane, Ultramagnetic MC's, King Sun, Dilated Peoples, El Da Sensei, Bumpy Knuckles, De La Soul, Jurassic 5, Paul Nice, Ill Advised and more. Listen to Plastic Man below...

Saturday, December 21, 2019

Adonis & DJ Skizz "Logan" (Album Stream)

Long Beach, California rapper Adonis connects with BK/LA producer DJ Skizz to bring you a 9-track album "Logan". As you may be able to tell from the title, this project is inspired by Marvel's Old Man Logan aka The Wolverine. Adonis has always been a huge marvel head and wanted to create a album that fused his love for the marvel universe with his microphone prowess as an MC. On the title track "Logan", Adonis actually takes on the Wolverine persona "I feel like I'm Old Man Logan on Mics simply was choose to give out moments that were Golden/I can't remember my life/know that my name is Logan it's engraved on a ice, Yikes!" DJ Skizz has been having another busy year behind the boards. On "Logan", he provides Adonis with an eclectic backdrop that includes tracks like the gritty "U.S.S.R", the slow, menacing "What U Call That", and the soulful "Stone'.  All of the songs fit cohesively into a body of songs that tells the story of a rapper who is the Wolverine of the rap game and most definitely has a bright future. Cop the instrumentals when they drop, too. Dig in...

Friday, December 20, 2019

Fat Beats "25th Anniversary Compilation" (Album Stream)

To celebrate the 25th Anniversary of Fat Beats, they've carefully curated this compilation of their best and favorite 25 tracks on Fat Beats Records. It also includes 2 brand new cuts from Clear Soul Forces and Ill Bill, as well as great tracks by Crimeapple, Masta Ace, Black Milk, Will Sessions, Blu & Exile, Kool G Rap, La Coka Nostra, Roc Marciano, El Michaels Affair, El Da Sensei, Trinity and more. Part of me is sad that they didn't contact me to use one of the vinyl-only exclusives we recorded on Fat Beats Records for the Eternia & MoSS "At Last" EP, but I'm still so extremely proud of all their accomplishments and cannot explain how much my years at Fat Beats (as a customer and working there) impacted my life. Thank you, Fat Beats! Please stream the compilation below...

Thursday, December 19, 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, December 18, 2019

Tha Soloist "Junoon" (EP Stream)

One of the most prolific MCs in the game, Tha Soloist represents out of Jersey City, and I'll be honest, I can't keep up with his output! I've probably missed several of his releases at this point - and I will eventually go back and check them - but for now, here's his latest effort, Junoon. It's a short EP, just 5 tracks, featuring production by A Dusty Cinema, Appetite and Dseize. I'm enjoying the soundscapes of A Dusty Cinema - Tha Soloist definitely has a good ear for production. I'd like them to do more work together in the near future. In the meantime, check out this EP below.

Saturday, December 14, 2019

DJ Ev "Hotter This Year" (Mixtape, 1996)

DJ Ev hits with once again with his '96 mixtape Hotter This Year. Another solid mix of hard and smoothe joints from Wu-Tang Clan, Busta Rhymes, Keith Murray, De La Soul, Redman, Mobb Deep, Ghostface Killah, Lost Boyz, Big Noyd, Nine, GZA, Smoothe The Hustler, Rakim, Fat Joe, The Beatnuts, KRS-One, Shyheim, Total, Intro, D'Angelo, M.O.P., Lil' Kim, Jay-Z, Erick Sermon and more. Listen below...

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Pounds x Buckwild "Trafficante" (Album Stream)

Rochester MC Pounds and Diggin In The Crates producer Buckwild have released a collaborative project titled Trafficante. The 12-track album features Roc Marciano, Benny The Butcher, Crimeapple and more. Buckwild's production remains extremely sharp throughout, and Pounds' unique voice and flow complement it well. I listened to this album at the request of two friends, because I honestly wasn't familiar with Pounds, but I can see why it's got a buzz. Listen below...

Saturday, December 07, 2019

Dirty Harry "Make My Day" (Mixtape, 1995)

Classic blend tape called Make My Day from Dirty Harry in 1995. The remixed-tape includes numerous blends featuring artists like Ol' Dirty Bastard, Nas, Lost Boyz, Boyz II Men, AZ, Redman & Method Man, Mary J. Blige, Mic Geronimo, Raekwon, TLC, Kool G Rap, Junior M.A.F.I.A., Raphael Saadiq, Rakim, Fugees, Smif-N-Wessun, A Tribe Called Quest, KRS-One, and lots more. Listen below...

Friday, December 06, 2019

Eto x Wally Clark "The Circle" (Album Stream)

Over the course of a year, Eto and Wally Clark worked hard to create something that was new and different from what you are used to, but while maintaining the raw sound that you have come to trust from Rochester's native son. What you get is that same grimy upstate flavor, mixed with some Southern Soul provided by Nashville raised Wally Clark. The Circle was crafted in Colorado, and by having Denver native Juan Fuentez contribute his stunning street photography, from his time spent in Los Angeles, this project is truly a culmination of all sides of America. Check it out below...

Sunday, December 01, 2019

DJ Green Lantern "Blaze" (Mixtape, 1999)

Another Tape Kingz release from '99; this is Blaze by The Evil Genius, Green Lantern. The mix tape includes an opening freestyle from Noreaga and then-unreleased tracks from Mobb Deep & Onyx, DMX, Black Moon & Q-Tip, Nas, Ghostface & Raekwon, Buckshot, The LOX, Inspectah Deck, Black Rob, Nas, Tragedy Khadafi, and Cormeaga, as well as cuts by Redman, Keith Murray, Big Pun, Mase, AZ and more. You've probably heard all these joints by now, but this was a real solid tape at the time for the exclusivity and now just for the overall quality of the songs he included. Listen below...