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...

Monday, May 20, 2019

Recognize Ali "Into My Soul" (Album Stream)

Recognize Ali is back with his second album this year, Into My Soul. The 10-track release is likely my favorite in his catalog thus far. The soulful production is handled by Tone Spliff, JuneLyfe, Free Mind, Deff Tone, Vago, and Alberto. Into My Soul also features Verbal Kent and the good homie J. Scienide. There's more reflection in the content, which compliments the melodic production. Listen below...

Sunday, May 19, 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.)

Saturday, May 18, 2019

EL Maryacho "That's Soul" (Beat Tape)

Swiss producer EL Maryacho releases a new beat tapes entitled That's Soul. As you'd expect, the 9 instrumentals featured on the project boast warm, soulful production and hard drums where applied. I dig the Polo-inspired artwork, and I am definitely keeping an eye out for EL Maryacho's production, already having produced for numerous underground artists I support. Listen to "That's Soul" below, and hopefully he makes a series out of these beat tapes. Got more info? Lemme know.

Friday, May 17, 2019

Da iLLAZ "People Under Detroit" (Album Stream)

Da iLLAZ hail from the south-side of Colorado Springs. The two-man group consists of L.A.Z. (MC, Clear Soul Forces) and illadope (producer/DJ). This project is an homage to People Under The Stairs, of which illadope is a huge fan. illadope states that he'd been listening to the group half of his life and purchased a vinyl box set in 2013, which included some unreleased beats and music, which inspired the project. In 2015, Thes announced his retirement and Da iLLAZ saw this an opportunity to give People Under The Stairs their flowers while they could smell them. illadope also adds, "To the casual listener out there reading this, familiarize yourself not only with Da ilLaz but also with People Under the Stairs. If you're feeling any of this check their site out and cop some merch!" Much respect to Thes One and Double K. Check out Da iLLAZ's People Under Detroit below...

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...

Sunday, May 12, 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.

Saturday, May 11, 2019

Diamond D "The Diam Peace 2" (Album Stream)

Diamond D is a legendary producer and a part of the crew, Diggin In The Crates (D.I.T.C.) that includes members: Diamond D, Big L, Fat Joe, Lord Finesse, O.C., Buckwild, Showbiz & A.G.. Keeping with his legendary status, Diamond D enlist an all-star cast for The Diam Piece 2, the follow up to part one. The LP features appearances from Fat Joe, Snoop Dogg, Elzhi, Raekwon, Styles P, Talib Kweli, Pharoahe Monch, Erick Sermon, Boot Camp Clik, O.C., Havoc, Xzibit, and more! Listen below...

Friday, May 10, 2019

Teo Frank "Underdogs" (Hip-Hop Documentary)

Téo Frank was just 18 and an aspiring director when he decided to try his luck at filmmaking on the other side of the Atlantic. After a series of encounters and experiences, his trip took a turn when he crossed paths with photographer Mason Strehl in Alaska. Their encounter took him to New York where he got the chance to work with underground Hip Hop artist Awon, Phoniks, Tiff the Gift, and Dephlow of Don't Sleep Records. From this adventure a documentary was born called UNDERDOGS. Who are the rappers in this film? Téo didn't know them when he began, and never dreamed their encounter would change his life the way it did. This is an inspiring documentary, now available to stream on Netflix, check out the trailer below. Much love to everyone at Don't Sleep Records.

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...

Sunday, May 05, 2019

Jodeci ft. Raekwon & Ghostface "Freek’n You Remix" (5/5/96)

The remix to Jodeci's "Freek’n You" with Raekwon & Ghostface is one of a few records that still reminds of when I didn't have the internet, lol. I bought the Jodeci LP, the song isn't on there - then I bought the 12" single, which had Raekwon's verse, but no Ghostface. Ok, technically I borrowed stole that 12" from St. John's University Radio, but that's not the point! Ultimately, I was able to find a bootleg copy, which I am pretty sure was this version - their names weren't credited anywhere on the record, but it was the right version - the "Mr. Dalvin’s Freek Mix." Jodeci would return the favor to Raekwon soon after with his Rainy Dayz Remix, also produced by Mr. Dalvin. In the era of classic hip-hop remixes of R&B records, the Freek'n You Remix might be second only to Method Man's "All I Need." Classic bars include: "What's your name? Lex, last name Diamonds / Icy earrings shining / What's your occupation? Crazy rhyming..." and Ghost never fails to bring his own flavor with "You got the munchies, baby, ice cold milk and Lorna Doones / How you like it baby? I like it on the sink..." Below is a rare live performance of the song on this day in 1996. Video via Zeke62.

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." 

Friday, May 03, 2019

DJ Stickem "May 3rd, 1994" (Mixtape, 1994)

Let's take it back to 1994, specifically May 3, 1994, on this throwback mix tape from DJ Stickem. Now reppin' San Diego, DJ Stickem dug back into a shoebox to pull out this tape, laced with tracks from Jeru The Damaja, Nas, Domino, Lords of the Underground, Ice Cube, Fat Joe, Casual, The Beatnuts, A Tribe Called Quest, Gang Starr, Tha Alkaholiks, Smif-N-Wessun, Co-Defendants, Black Moon, KMD, Ill Al Skratch, The Pharcyde, King Just, and lots more. It's 25 years later, enjoy these gems below...

Thursday, May 02, 2019

Masta Ace "Shelf Life" (1992, Unreleased Album)

Bob has done it again! This time around, Chopped Herring Records has pressed the unreleased album from Masta Ace in 1992 to CD. They previously unearthed it under two separate vinyl releases titled "Shelf Life," Volumes 1 and 2. Masta Ace has successfully navigated generations of Hip-Hop, remaining true to his original sound but consistently growing and perfecting his craft. You'll certainly hear the growth when you look back at this release, but hopefully you can still appreciate that Ace was always a pioneer and even back then he was pushing the culture forward with his style. Unfortunately, being a vinyl-first label, there is no incentive to stream these releases in full, so until you go ahead and cop the CD, these snippets will have to hold you over. Check it below...