So I been feeling kinda guilty that I don't post, or even listen to, 95% of the music people send me. This cat spammed up Soundcloud with his track and it's totally ridiculous, but I kinda like it. And c'mon son: who's gonna post Siberian homegrown hip-hop 100% VHS Quality if not me?
Archive for the 'the overlook hotel' Category
This is the part where I write a witty ironic blurb plugging the Overlook Hotel as the perfect writer's retreat, and then I don't because it's not that funny, my tooth hurts and I need a cigarette. So instead I just run a bunch of links for new joints you should cop.
- Chris Macro :: Macro Dubplates Vol. 3: Brooklyn Vs Kingston [download] Some more of that super chicken dub-hop shit.
- Ill Clinton :: The Antisocialist Kid got beats. Gonna plow through the catalog and you should too.
- Danny Brown :: XXX Might be a few of ya missed this.
- Willie Evans Jr. :: Introducin' [iTunes] Sounds so much like MF Doom I had to check it wasn't a new alias. Dope regardless.
- The Black Opera :: Overture X-Clan righteousness over a Godzilla-theme sample? All good.
- Elucid :: Super Black Chocolate Simian Chuck D robot ass-raping 8-bit glitch yowls. In a good way.
- Concrete Sound System :: The Underbelly Elucid and his evil henchmen serve up a dub-glitch set.
- Adam Warlock :: Dark Weapons (from Mars) Evil spitting from Nasa.
- Bil Basmala :: Nobody Beats Vol. 1 & Vol 2. More superb beats from the Cat Formerly Known As Autolect.
- Ensilence :: No Good Thing Homegirl comes through again.
- Black-Tokyo :: The City's Breathing This kid also got some beats.
- Paul White :: Rapping With Paul White '11 has been a great year for hyperkinetic glonky beats with drawling rhymes.
I don't remember when I first came across DDay One's stuff; I used to spend hours and hours scouring rap blogs for new shit and just hoover it all up. See, I came up in the record store days with no pockets. I'd agonize over which records I could afford to buy, and dream about being in an endless record store where they had everything and you could listen to anything. Hey presto, papi: internet.
I got really into instrumental hip-hop a couple of years ago, and it seems like the '00s were definitely their peak period. Problem has always been separating the great from the meh. Partially, we got eighty gazillion Japanese DJs putting out so many instrumental jazz-hop LPs you could have a whole website built around nothing but. Led by the late Nujabes and Fat Jon--to get opinionamated now--this shit mostly sounds the same, goes for the noodly-sounding bullshit, and when it does get a groove on ruins it with pathetic flute loops or weak-ass female vocal hooks. And the beats? The beats are weak as fuck. Some of it is good, no doubt, but it's not head-nodding.
Remember when illbient and trip-hop were actually a thing? That made it easier, I guess, because the line's really blurred between 'electronic' and 'instrumental hip-hop.' If I'm on the fence, I listen closely to the beats. Do they go dit-dit-dit-dit-dit? Electronic, get the fuck outta here with that. Do they go boom-bop-bop-boom-bop-bop-boom? Hip-hop.
So in Greek mythology, you had the Titans who ruled over the Golden Age. Cronos was the king Titan, but because he heard this prophecy his kids would overthrow him, he'd eat them as soon as they were born. This one time his wife gives him a rock instead and raises the kid in secret. When Zeus grows up he cuts his pop's stomach open and frees his siblings, who all grew up in there with only that baby-Zeus-sized rock to play with. (That must've pretty much sucked.) They establish the Olympic pantheon of the Greeks, Romans and all those paintings and sculptures of swan rape and flying sandal wearing naked muhfuckas from your high school art history class.
Where was I going with this? Uh...shit. Oh, right: if we cast El-P as the Zeus of the millenial indie-rap pantheon, the best and most overlooked MC from there is C-Rayz Walz. He's like the Hephaestus of that click, the blacksmith god: he stays underground steady pounding iron and steel.
A roundup of recent(ish) bangers.
I can't embed other players up in here, so deal with it. Not gonna break the list into cute categories like 'eggs to order' or 'bacon tray' because that's stupid. Also not gonna put 'em up in one big zip file because I keep it legals.
Man, this month's hip-hop internet has been on some hit-chasing gossipy bullshit.
- In a couple of paragraphs out of a 432-page memoir, Ashley Judd says hip-hop is misogynist, provoking hand-wringing and debate, because no one has ever said this before, and because Ashley Judd is a towering figure in the hip-hop community.
- Jay-Z, or at least an S. Carter software emulator, interviews Gwyneth Paltrow, who claims she knows all the words to Straight Outta Compton and reveres Eazy-E. Cover version please.
- As funny as the 'Fight For Your Right Revisited' trailer is, I'm disappointed the Beastie Boys didn't go the whole I'm Not There route and cast Cate Blanchett, a traffic cone, Mr. Sulu, Hulk Hogan, a caterpillar, Harry Dean Stanton, Tilda Swinton and Gilbert Gottfried as themselves. Also the whole thing kinda drags on and on. Nobody cares the ridiculous number of famous people you know, just be funny. I don't know, it's the 'international version,' so maybe it's all Herzog'd up or something. 'They all start peeing on each other, then they get beat up by cops'...that seems kinda European to me.
- Legendary DJ Mister Cee is busted for public lewdness in a ladyboy stylee, and mega-shit-talker/walking meme Lil B announces his new LP will be titled 'I'm Gay,' provoking hand-wringing and debate about homophobia in hip-hop, which no one has ever talked about before.
- 25 gazillion more words [note: estimate] are written about Odd Future, of which 50% have nothing to do with the music, 25% complain about the 50% which don't talk about the music, and 25% are about Complex's very morally and legally dubious tracking down of Earl Sweatshirt.
- Sadat X has a wine-tasting show. Tony Touch and Crazylegs have a cooking show.
- Vibe runs a pictorial of 12 Celebrities Caught Picking Their Noses.
- Flavor Flav's fried chicken restaurant is out of business after just four months.
This is pretty much a post-record label age, but there's still some I keep my eyes on--Backwoodz, Nature Sounds, Galapagos4, Babygrande, and Rhymesayers releases are usually worth a check. Uncommon Records has definitely been blowing up the spot with some good shit lately, and this is their latest, a remix set of the Lobotomy Music LP. Most of the time a remix version isn't as good as the original, but this is one of the times it's as good/better.
What we're seeing across North Africa and the Middle East is a youth revolution, driven by disenfranchisement and a lack of opportunities. Hip hop has always been the original soundtrack for that. It started in the city Ford told to drop dead, and since "The Message" it's been the theme music for angry young people whose rage is against poverty, ghettos and repression--political, racial and economic. Public Enemy made politics and fist-up rebellion their sound, and the torch's been carried by a handful since then.
Hip hop's been international for years, go get a late pass. I remember reading about Polish MCs in crumbling Soviet-era projects saying they couldn't understand the words of hip-hop, but the beats and the message still spoke to them. There are ghettos all over the world, and hip hop is there. OK, sure, it gets watered down here and over there as party music, gangsta posturing and fake rebellion in fitteds and sagging shorts, but on the real it's what Chuck D (in his Hannah Arendt moment) called 'the CNN of the ghetto,' now more than ever.
I kinda stopped paying attention to instrumentals last year, but French beatmaker Al'Tarba has brought a pretty solid LP here. Bringing in some guest MCs Q-Unique, Qualm and a few other cats I never heard of, the sound here is reminiscent of Kid Koala, Guts, Chinese Man, and DJ Cam and Blue Sky Black Death (before both disappeared up their own assholes of Enya-sounding suck)--some swing-influenced, uptempo beats; some Krush/Muggs type of eerie shit...good stuff. Give it a whirl. (more...)
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