Monday, September 29, 2008

Edgar Allen Floe "The Road To Streetwise"

Being an emcee out of North Carolina has gotta be hard. After looking to be the “next” spot to blow, Petey Pablo’s fire burned out and Little Brother was left in his place to carry the torch in the underground.

After some steady grinding the state seems to be starting to see it’s shine once again as emcees continue to break out and get heard. While 9th has been generous with his beat placement, being part of the Justus League crew has to have it’s advantages and Edgar Allen Floe might be a testament to them.

Being a serious LB fan, I’ve always had an interest in the rest of the JL crew but outside of Scudda (don’t ask me why, dude just catches my ear) few others have ever stood out significantly. Edgar Allen is one of those few.

Not spending all of his time in the studio, or at least not releasing all that he records his output is a little thin with a debut full length expected in January. A few years ago he impressed me with his previous mixtape Floe Almighty with an assortment of heat courtesy of 9th and Khrysis among others and once again the man has delivered a mixtape that plays much like an album should with his trademark thick voice putting forth stories for days.

Road to Streetwise is soulful and fresh all the way through with a number of beats flipping samples in original ways and always working perfectly with whatever Floe chooses to discuss.

Kick back and listen to this while you burn a good one.

On another note, I apologize for the absence of the links in the previous post, I'm workin' on a solution so just hang tight!

Friday, September 26, 2008

Remixes from the Brothers Jackson

Stones Throw.

The Brothers Jackson.

They go hand in hand. Madlib made the music that led the Wolf’s crazy idea to be one of the most successful record labels in existence, then out of no where (to all of us, I imagine at least ‘Lib saw baby bro coming) there is a brother who has HEAT too…

Lord have mercy!

A few months ago I came across what was titled Madvillain 2. I’ve been spewing my fair share of hate towards Mr. MF (shout to Kno!) and haven’t been impressed with much of his work since the first Madvillain, but that was a work of genius and I’ll always be excited for a second go round should we ever be blessed by the crazy duo again.

But this was not a true re-match. What we have here is Madlib’s own blunted second take on the project that put the mask in the public eye.

Resequencing, renaming, and completely remixing the original Madvillain record, this plays like a brand new album and for that Madlib gets all the props!

But wait, what about this project from Oh No? Something with Percee P? Didn’t Madlib just put out an entirely produced Percee P record?


While Madlib put together a remix project for an old classic (he has also remixed the Percee joint but that’s another post) his younger brother grabbed up the a cappella’s to P’s joint and did his thing behind the boards.

Oh No is incredibly talented. He has shown that over the last few years with an output rivaling that of his brother. As I listened to his take on what Percee P should be rocking to I kept wondering how it compared to what Madlib had done originally – I had seen what Madlib did with a second take, but to my surprise I hadn’t actually sat down with Perseverance.

For an emcee who has been rhyming for almost as long as I’ve been alive it’s been much discussed that his debut is only now out, but that isn’t important – props to Stones Throw for recognizing the mans skill and legendary status. What matters after all those years is that Percee P is the same beast who cut his teeth rhyming with the best on the corners of NYC.

“Call me Purse/Cause I'm always on some chicks arm”

Surprisingly the two brothers took very similar approaches to the record, however Madlib’s still the older and wiser one (he’s the Beat Konducta!) as his beats capture the grittiness that Percee P is known for but they are still filled with that soul only Madlib pulls out of the wax.

Oh No has that boom bap down and he crafted something entirely different, straight out of the D.I.T.C. vault (he better get a beat or two on their new project!) and this leaves you with no choice but to curl up your brow and bang your head to the beat while Percee P does what he does.

While initially listening to the Oh No take I kept thinking “I don’t know that Madlib could have topped this.”

I was proven wrong, very wrong. But that is not to say Oh No is bad, he isn’t Madlib just knows what he is doing! The man just put out what could be dubbed a Nova Jazz Hop (read: Jazz meets Hip Hop meets Bossa Nova) record with one of the foremost drummers out of Sao Paulo. Oh No still has some catching up to do.

And let’s not forget this mysterious Madvillain 2 project that got this whole thing started. According to the Stones Throw website it was something Madlib did just to bump and after getting heard around the offices it was decided to be released! So do what you gotta and find it (I made it real easy) cause you haven’t heard that next level beat until you’ve heard the latest coming out of Madlib’s lab.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Edo G featuring Pete Rock "My Own Worst Enemy"

As much as I love my sleep, I won’t lie I’ve kinda been enjoying waking up early in the morning before heading into work. Letting the sun rise around you is a great feeling!

This morning, even after being inundated with way to many new joints (I swear Christmas is on September 30th this year!) to bang I decided to pop in this record from Edo G and Pete Rock My Own Worst Enemy.

While it’s hard to believe this is four years old, I guess it does make sense being as I was getting ready to head to college when my boy David copped it. Go figure the kid who never pays any attention to the dudes of years past would go and cop something from these two legends before I was even up on the significance of the project.

Well after four years of sleepin’ I’m finally listening and I can’t believe I never picked this up! The beats are handled almost exclusively by the Soul Brotha #1, but we get one treat a piece from Diamond D, DJ Supreme One and DJ Revolution (who's dropin' a dope joint of his own but looks to be overshadowed by all the other high profile releases we are seeing – don’t sleep!) all of whom deliver the goods, creating an album with a distinct “dusty” sound.

But that is not to say it sounds old. Even if you wanna classify Edo G and Pete Rock as “old school” feel free, but their ain’t nothing old about this record. Just that real Hip Hop music from the soul for the soul out of Boston!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Black Spade "To Serve With Love"

Here is a sleeper for y'all! All credit here goes to my boy Ty Davis over at the Street. He kept putting it in my ear that this kid Black Spade, who some may remember from Nicolay's solo Here, but I just wasn't checkin' it. Then he hit me off with the CD.

While it def takes a little open mindedness - it is on Om after all - this record is the perfect album for a gloomy afternoon. Filled with his own production (under the name Stoney Rock) he delivers a wide assortment of beats pulling from the dusty crates we all know and love around here.

While I wasn't impressed on my first listen I kept it in the deck and slowing the sounds consume you. The record is very organic with beats constantly changing and seguing into something else. You'll hear hints of Dilla, PR, and many others (he has a great tribute to all the beatmakers in "The Genius in You")in his beats but he is completly and totally his own producer.

Check it & just listen.

Torae "Allow Me To Reintroduce Myself"

While I haven't been too visible on the blogging scene for far too long, I was still listening to tracks and albums continually. This blog right here will be for those albums I hear that need to be discovered by any means necessary.

Torae is an emcee out of NY spitting serious. Armed with a flow that brings to mind the best his city has to offer and a swagger on par with the "SLU" crew (Don't worry he comes harder than any of them did!) if you haven't heard the kid it's only a matter of time.

Having dropped a debut "street" album, Daily Conversation, in January, he teamed up with Okayplayer, Legend and DJ Nice to put out what sits before your eyes. Allow Me To Reintroduce Myself is filled with the griminess you expect from New York, but which has been missing for far to long.

Picking a number of original beats to rock on from the likes of Khrysis, 9th Wonder and Marco Polo along with some of the best instrumentals we have seen over the years Torae demonstrates just what it is the Bad Boy & Dipset camps have seen: The kid can spit!

But don't let those names fool you, this isn't bubblegum sillyness, this is straight Hip Hop from the heart and Torae is determined to make his name known - let him introduce himself.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Large Pro "Main Source"

For those that know the name I expect you download this on GP alone. If you're confused just check out the discography and this interview.

From his roll in exposing a young Nasir Jones to the world (BBQ is still the cut isn't it?!)to being invovled in a number of classics, Extra P has always been on the low and one of the best to touch an SP (now an MPC) and at the same time he holds it down on the mic finer than alot of these so called emcees of today.

Having laid back in the shadows, the Professor is getting ready to unleash his new joint on the world and if you have been missing what he cooks up you need to hear this. Paying tribute to, and reminding the suckers about, his former group Main Source is fresh and new displaying both Large Professsors ability to continue to deliver vintage beats, but at the same time never relying on his past.

Their shouldn't be any talk about this record sounding "old school." It drops September 30th, cop that shit!