Taken From: “The Gin Diaries” (read Dart’s take on the album HERE)
Damn yo, the lyrical “excerpt” from Suff Daddy’s neckbreaker, “I Need A Break”: “Step To ‘Em/ Gettin’ off, Gettin’, Gettin”, Gettin’ off…”, has probably been my most said “phrase” of the week. You know how every once in a while you stumble upon a cut that has those certain “unforgettable” qualities? Well, “I Need A Break” is just that; a sure-fire, neck-snapping instrumental cut from a “sophisticated” instrumental LP, “I Need A Break” is laced with an extra crisp bassline, one helluva’ catchy sample and brilliant sequencing. While “I Need A Break” stands tall amongst the other noteworthy cuts that can be found on “The Gin Diaries”, tracks such as “4 My Holiks” and “Hospital” aren’t lagging too far behind in terms of quality and playability. Be sure to peep “The Gin Diaries” as you can count on “I Need A Break” holding down a definite spot on the next Bloggerhouse mixtape.
Taken From: “One Night Stand” (Get It HERE)
Leo dropped his free LP, “One Night Stand” in our C-Box late last week, and being from PA myself, it was virtually a no-brainier to allot this local Philly product his well-deserved shine. I might add, not only was “One Night Stand” a very enjoyable listen (although, the sound quality of some of the tracks on the LP could use a little “tightening up”), but it was the addictive force of tracks like the Ta-Ku-assisted “Hearts” that kept me coming back for more. Propelled by a slick beatbox sample, “Hearts” finds Leo reminiscing of a love lost over an undeniable track with a hint of East Coast bounce injected into the mix.
Taken From: “OJ Simpson”
“Chillin’ like Lance in the Tour De France..”, has gotta’ be one of the more catchy hooks in recent memory. Atop a pulsing Madlib sound scape, Guilty Simpson appropriately takes this bangin’ instrumental to “New Heights”. Guilty’s “tongue in cheek” lyrical delivery meshes perfectly with Madlib’s quirky, yet always innovative production to account for what I consider to be the most “rewind-worthy” cut from “OJ Simpson”. Also, while we’re on the topic of “OJ Simpson”, any one else get the feeling if Stones Throw’s intent for this album was to feature the lyricism of one Guilty Simpson or to shed even more light on Madlib’s production? I don’t know, but this sure as hell feels like a Madlib album as opposed to a Guilty Simpson album, waay too many instrumental “breaks” thrown into the mix on “OJ Simpson” for me, which deducts from the overall fluidity of the album.
Taken From: “The Good Sun”
I gotta’ say, man, Homeboy Sandman’s promo for his forthcoming LP, “The Good Sun” was my very first exposure to this lyrically-inclined emcee, but it definitely won’t be the last. I popped “The Good Sun” in the Ipod to accompany me for a morning run yesterday and after just one full listen to the LP, I can say that one thing’s for certain: Homeboy Sandman CAN RAP HIS ASS OFF! And, on no other track is that more prevalent than “The Carpenter”. Over a frantic, 2 Hungry Bros. production Sandboy unleashes a furious lyrical barrage that will have you exhaling a deep breath upon the track’s end. It doesn’t even appear that Sandman took a breather between rhymes on this uptempo heatrock.
“The Good Sun” should be arriving in stores near the 1st of June. The album, his first on NYC indie powerhouse High Water Music, boasts not only the otherworldly lyrical and thematic dexterity that have quickly made Boy Sand a champion of the national talent-based hip hop community, but also his most personal material to date. “The Good Sun is setting a lot of things straight. If somebody sets someone else straight, it might be referred to as ‘sonning’ them. I’m ‘sonning’ people with this album—a lot of people. It’s the good son though. It’s all done with love” says the Queens, NY emcee.
Taken From: “Path To Jersey” EP (Get It HERE)
My first exposure to Tone Liv was via his inclusion on the Uncut Raw CLASSIC “First Toke” a few years back and I’ve been tracking his solo career ever since. Late last month Tone released his freeEP “Path To Jersey” via Domination, and upon my first listen to the EPMD-flavored “Chill”, the track has since remained on my “Top 25 Most Played” on the Ipod ever since. Produced by Tha S ence, “Chill” takes it back to the days of truck jewels, beepers and over-sized cellphones, and Tone’s gruff, sandpaper delivery on “Chill” captures the true essence and spirit of the underground as Tha S ence’s moving production evokes images of the gritty, sh*tty inna’ city (c) Group Home.
Taken From: DJ House Shoes Presents: Chanes “An Experiment In Instrumentation” (Get It HERE)
Shi*ty cover art aside, this BandCamp special, the DJ House Shoes presented, instrumental LP from Chanes boasted some of the hardest production that I’ve heard thus far, nearly half-way through 2010. If you skipped the download of “An Experiment..” all you “4-20″ heads missed out on a true smoker’s anthem, the Notorious B.I.G. (“Smoke a lil’ chronic”) sampled “Smoke Chronic”. With a heavy dose of electronica mingled into the mix, “Smoke Chronic” will give your speakers a workout and will have your amps screaming for new life when all is said and done. I could have picked more than one track from this LP to include on this week’s “Most Played”, this album is just THAT GOOD. And no, Chanes and House Shoes are not the same person as many have inquired.
Taken From: “Patience”
Soooo….TRUTHLiVE’s “Patience” dropped on the 20th of April, you know the ENTIRE LP was produced by Seattle’s very own Jake One, right? Yeah, that’s what I thought..me neither. Yet, after listening to “Patience” in it’s entirety mid-week, I had to skim through the LP just one more time to be like: ahhhh OK. However, “The Stimulus Package” this ain’t, rightfully so as Jake One’s collaborative LP with Philadelphia’s finest Freeway is probably the best piece of work to emerge from 2010. Not to say that Jake laced TRUTHLive with nothing but throwaway beats, but on the same token, TRUTHLiVE is no Freeway either.
Yet, it is tracks such as the Mo Green featured “Ready Set Go” as well as “Poetry In Motion” and “It’s Easy” (which features the same backdrop that the Special Teamz ripped apart on their debut LP) that make “Patience” more than deserving of your ear’s attention. Coming from the same producer who laced one of my favorite productions of the last decade (Jake One’s “Home”, from “White Van Music”, “Ready Set Go” is what we’ve grown to expect from one of the West’s most underrated, under-appreciated producers.
Taken From: Panacea’ s forthcoming LP “12 Step Program”
For those readers whom remained loyal to When They Reminisce over the last 3 years, you already know just how “big” I am on Panacea. Truly one of a kind, the production styling of K-Murdock and lyrical musings of one Raw Poetic don’t really “grab you” per se upon first listen to the duo. Yet, they are both so damn unique and original that it’s almost impossible not to revert back to albums like “The Scenic Route” and “A Mind On A Ship Through Time” for a refresher on just how talented this oft-overlooked duo truly are.
With the proper-U.S. (the album is already available for purchase overseas, I believe) release just right around the bend, May 5th to be exact, from what I’ve gathered with just a few complete listens to “12 Step Program”, Panacea has compiled their finest piece of work to date. While K-Murdock’s production on the LP features his signature melodic style, it’s tracks such as this, the nearly 120-BPM “Sync In City” that venture off the usual path of what you can expect from Panacea. And while Raw Poetic has remained as consistent and potent on the mic as ever, Panacea’s forward-thinking on this LP elevates this album to an instant classic in the minds of Panacea’s die-hard following.
Taken From: “Cherry Blossoms And Gunpowder”
Louis (Waterloo) Hampton and Joshua (Rhettoric) Rhett are both Charlottesville natives, while attending VCU in Richmond, Rhettoric started honing his skills as a beat maker/producer, competing in local producer/MC showcases and crushing the competition. Meanwhile, back in Charlottesville, Waterloo is creating with Beetnix. Building fame locally and on the East Coast by opening up for Ghostface, GZA and Muggs, State Radio, and Murs and 9th Wonder. Through a mutual friend Rhettoric, and Waterloo were introduced. Both hit it off and had respect for each others style. After a few visits from Charlottesville to Richmond, a collaborative album was agreed upon. In the spirit of Murs and 9th Wonder’s. 316 the 9th edition, Waterloo and Rhettoric were formed. Creating “Cherryblossoms and Gunpowder.”
St. Mic sent this to me last week, and allow me to be the first one to say: “this LP is SERIOUS”. Waterloo has lyrics for days, and while he may remind some of Skyzoo (not a bad comparison, by any stretch), this cat reels you in with his vivid lyricism and wordplay as Rhettoric laces him with some sick production. For a nice little primer of what I’m referring to peep the aforementioned “Good Morning”, a playful cut that will have you reaching for the “repeat/rewind” button in an instant. Warning: neck-brace not included!
Taken From: “Elements Of Life” (Get It HERE)
When you listen to a particular album and in the end you don’t quite know as to how you would “classify” or “categorize” and album that in itself can be the gift and the curse. Is 5th Element’s instrumental Hip Hop? Electronica? Just what is it? Doesn’t matter, “Elements Of Life” is HANDS-DOWN (although, I’m quite sure I’m missing one or two?) the most cohesive, enjoyable beat tape that I’ve enjoyed this year. Be sure to hit up THE FIND MAG, for the link and the complete rund0wn on each track as 5th Element takes you from start to finish on this instrumental expedition. I just can’t believe I never heard of this cat before, extremely talented dude!