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Chemical by Apathy

"Ob-scene, un-clean, love between teens."

Banner of Apathy (hip hop MC)

I haven’t been listening to much Apathy in a while, but I thought I’d feature one of his best to possibly rekindle my interest in him again. I was heavily into Apathy and some of the other Demigodz, along with Jedi Mind, a couple years back, which were some of my favorite groups from the East Coast at the time.

I’m not the biggest fan of East Coast hip hop, if you couldn’t already tell (the site is mainly West Coast/Midwest hip hop). I just relate more to the West Coast/Midwest vibe, but I am trying to gain some knowledge of the East (it’s embarrassing when ya don’t know much about its birthplace), so if you have anything to recommend I’d love to hear it. If you like this one I’ve got a few more East Coast classics up my sleeve, so post up and I’ll do the same.

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Bug Powder Dust (Remix) by Kruder & Dorfmeister

"I always hit the tape with the rough road styles."

Banner of Kruder & Dorfmeister

I’ll admit I’m not the biggest fan of the old school/golden age era of hip hop (basically, anything before the mid-90’s). It’s not that I don’t appreciate it, I have mad respect for a lot of it, but my biggest issue with it is the beats. The reason I have such a passion for hip hop, as I do today, is because of its adoption of a wide variety of instrumentals from various sources. I’m not saying that this didn’t happen in the 80’s & 90’s, it’s just more prevalent nowadays because of technology and the internet. This brings me to today’s feature, “Bug Powder Dust (K&D Session)”, which takes some classic rhymes and lays it on a smooth trip hop beat…

“Bug Power Dust” was originally created by Bomb the Bass, an electronic/hip hop group. The song is essentially a homage to William Boroughs’s life & works, more specifically his famous novel, “The Naked Lunch”. The song was later redone by Kruder & Dorfmeister, which are known for their downtempo remixes of pop/hip hop songs. What I like so much about this tripped-out remix is its combination of my two favorite genres, hip hop & trip hop (I like the hop). The MC, Justin Warfield, flows above the beat so seamless it feels like this should be the original. He has a similar style & sound to one of the Beastie Boys, but I can’t figure out which one, any ideas

Prodigy also did a remix of the song, which can be found here, but I warn you, it’s got nothing on Kruder & Dorfmeister’s! Also, in the full article is the original version/music video – check it out and give me your thoughts on them all.

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[audio:BugPowderDust.mp3|titles=Bug Powder Dust (K&D Session)]

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There U R by Restoring Poetry in Music

"And I walk the walk to erase my scars."

Banner - Restoring Poetry in Music Live in Concert

Lately I’ve rehashed a couple songs that I’d mentioned before, but only because they’re incredible tracks – “There U R” being among the most incredible of them all. I’ve been a long time fan of Restoring Poetry in Music, and I thought for my 100th post I’d feature a track from, if not my favorite, one of my favorite hip hop albums to date, Pyramids in Moscow.

“There U R” is a relaxing meditation on rekindling that love from long ago with Raw Poetic’s smooth & sincere lyrics. Backup vocals are done by Patrick Fritz, and really put a nice touch on an already heartwarming track. P-Fritz also supports my claim, which I’ve spoken about many times on this blog, that mixing a singer’s voice into a rap song can bring a whole ‘nother element to the piece. Basically, rap + singing = good!

Give it a listen and let me know how you think the two play off each other. Also, if you like this song then definitely check out “Sleep Walkers“, it’s my favorite song by RPM (followed closely by “There U R”).

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[audio:ThereUR.mp3|titles=There U R]

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Nectar for Isis by DJ Frane

"Like a bird you're always flyin' away."

Banner - DJ Frane

This man is the master of marijuana music. With three full albums on beats to blaze to, a stoner will never go hungry for a good tune to tune out to (that’s fun to say). I’ve featured Frane’s music countless times, and I still can’t get enough of it. Although, each album contains a wondrous story composed of an eclectic set of beats, his final album, Journey to the Planet of Birds, left me awestruck. How this man can pull together such varying beats to create a stunning soundscape is beyond me, but I like it!

I wanted to show off “Nectar for Isis” not because it’s my favorite track, but I think it’s an overall good display of Frane’s talent. The hypnotic vocals slapped on top of a downtempo, trip-hop beat is an eargasm in its own right, but Frane slides in, ever so delicately, a classic piano solo, which tops it off nicely. One thing Frane loves to do is change up the beat in the middle of the piece. The second half of this track was featured in a post I did on Some Cool Ass Ringtones. There’s a few different ringtones to choose from, so if your in need check it out (I’m actually using one myself).

DJ Frane is one of the main reasons we started this site up. Anything he comes out with amazes us each time. If ya wanna here more about him subscribe to our Facebook Page, so you’ll get the updates sent right to ya (and so we know you like us). Enjoy!

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[audio:NectarforIsis.mp3|titles=Nectar for Isis]

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The Ghost Inside by Broken Bells

Move over Gorillaz, it's DangerShins!

Banner - Broken Bells by Broken Bells

I’ve finally found some rock that isn’t 40 years old. Of course, though, it had to be by one of the most abundant underground hip hop producers today, Danger Mouse. Danger Mouse has worked on a number of different projects including Gnarls Barkley, DANGERDOOM, The Grey Album – one of the best mashup albums to date – and now, to top it all off, he’s collaborated with James Mercer of The Shins to form Broken Bells.

When first hearing of Broken Bells on hypem, I didn’t realize the two had collaborated at the time. After realizing it, I knew I had to check out the entire album. I’ve listened to the album a few times through and so far it’s prettay, prettay good. The group reminds me a lot of Gorillaz, that sort of electric-inspired alternative rock. I like this new style, but haven’t immersed myself in it enough (any other suggestions). The album had two songs in particular that stuck with me. Of course, they’re the two singles off the album, the first being “The High Road”, which I instantly fell in love with, and “The Ghost Inside”, which took some time but is steadily becoming my favorite.

The reason I chose to feature “The Ghost Inside” over the other favored track is because it has something that I can’t really explain… or maybe I just have more to talk about with this one (I’m sure ill feature the other some other time). What might be the reason I like this one so much is because it, in particular, reminds me a lot of the Gorillaz. It has some quirky vocals that grow on ya, and some unconventional, hip hop inspired instrumentals (a lot like the Gorillaz). One of the sounds actually reminds me of the sound that the black smoke makes in LOST. I probably just got LOST on the brain because the final episode is tomorrow! But just listen closely and I bet you’ll hear it too. Anyways, check it – tell me what ya think.

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[audio:TheGhostInside.mp3|titles=The Ghost Inside]

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Ghost Ride the Whip (The Hyphy Movement)

Thizz or Die - The Hizztory of Gettin' Thizzy

Banner - Ghost Ride the Whip (The Hyphy Movement)

Ghost Ride the Whip (The Hyphy Movement) is a documentary based on where the Bay Area got its roots from and why the culture is like it is today. It covers many key proponents of the movement, including Keek da Sneek, E-40, and even M.C. Hammer, but one in particular is highlighted, Mac Dre.

When I first heard about Mac Dre in 2004 I had just started out college. My roommate, who’s from the Bay, was upset about a rapper who had been murdered. I had no idea who he was at the time, but since then I’ve gotten to know his music and now fully understand why Mac Dre will be missed so much. What makes him so memorable is his lyrically inventive rhymes, coming up with shit that’s still fresh & fun today. Not only that, he’s an artist that puts some amusement in hip hop, giving us a break from all the serious shit (which is definitely needed at times). To be fair though, many protest what Mac Dre and some others of the movement advocate, questioning its dangers.

Some elements of the Hyphy Movement include Ghost-riding & Thizzin’, which as fun as they may be… can be dangerous. But people need to realize that those elements are not what the Hyphy Movement is solely about. What it all really comes down to is having a good time or more commonly know there as: gettin’ stupid, goin’ stewie, etc. etc. (I tried looking up synonyms of go stupid without much success). Some may not understand why gettin’ stupid would be fun, but I think it’s just because they haven’t tried it themselves.

Whether your into Bay Area hip hop or not, this is an informative & entertaining film that all hip hop heads need to watch. I’ve also included one of Mac Dre’s best in case any of y’all don’t have anything to get stewie to. R.I.P. Mac Dre.

Play dat Film

[audio:DoinWhatIDo.mp3|titles=Doin’ What I Do]

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Finally Moving Remix by Pretty Lights

"Sometimes... I get a good feelin."

Banner of Pretty Lights's logo

This is my final feature of a three parter I’m doing on Pretty Lights’s 2008 album, Filling Up The City Skies. Just to recap, the first was on “Solamente“, which is a cool, downtempo beat; and the second was “Hot Like Sauce“, which is more like this feature, in that it’s something to start the night off with (aka good for a pregame mix). Each of these songs have been a favorite of mine at some point in the last few months, but I’ve come to realize that they’re all good for different situations.

Getting to the specifics on “Finally Moving Remix”: this one, without a doubt, has the best vocals of the three. I did some investigating on who the female voice is and came up with.. nothing, but to be honest, I didn’t put too much effort into it. Whoever she is, she has a remarkable voice, and the ways in which Derek Vincent Smith can doctor it to fit the beat so well can be almost perplexing at times. The man not only finds incredibly talented musicians to sample, but he can butcher their voices into something strangely pleasing to the ear. This original he created back in 2006 may not be as heart-poundingly engaging as this, but it still warrants a listen if you’re into his sound. If y’all want me to post it up then give me a shout out in the comments below, and I’ll see what I can do. I hope y’all enjoy it – you’ll definitely be seeing more of his music manipulations on here in the future.

One other thing, as I mentioned in one of my earlier posts, you can download most of Pretty Lights’s music on their website, and support ’em by purchasing a t-shirt from their store.

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[audio:FinallyMovingRemix.mp3|titles=Finally Moving Remix]

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Mission Statement by ¡MAYDAY!

"And still they blast the blasphemy, they bask in it."

Banner of ¡MAYDAY!

In Chicago for the weekend, so I’m gonna make this short (gotta get wild soon). I posted Mayday’s self-titled album when the site was just starting off, and I had to give it another shout out (or at least one of its singles). This is one of my favorite beats along with some of my favorite flows, and I know most of y’all won’t go back to September ’09 in the blog, so I thought I’d do it for ya (it’s not me just being lazy, it’s a sick track/album). It’s short and sweet, and a good intro. to Mayday’s mission (statement).

Oh, and if you’re feelin’ this then follow us on Twitter, so you know when we post more sweet shyt (and so we know you like us).

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[audio:MissionStatement.mp3|titles=Mission Statement]

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Celestial Clockwork by Illogic

"I walked into a life of tainted dreams 'n' gum ball machines."

Banner - Illogic

I was “tumbling” around when I came upon this beauty at a scribe., a Tumbler blog. I swear when you’re looking real hard for something you never come up with shit, but when you least expect it you fall into something you love – Illogic being a prime example. It’s hard to find rappers that go beyond the lyrics to weave their rhymes into the beat. I find many flow to a rich & intricate beat, yet their rap is stale and often boring. Illogic may not be the most expressive, dynamic MC, but he knows his way around a beat, especially “Celestial Clockwork”. So far I haven’t been too impressed with the rest of his album, but I’ll definitely have another go around soon. I can tell this guy’s got something…

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[audio:CelestialClockwork.mp3|titles=Celestial Clockwork]

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No Sweat by GAYNGS

"And now it's all over again... with you."

Banner of GAYNGS members

GAYNGS releases their first album, Relayted, today, so I thought I would feature another song of theirs to kick it off. This may not be “The Gaudy Side of Town“, but it sure as hell has some good vocals (especially the chorus), and one hell of a sax – and you know how much I love sax(ophones). The one thing I didn’t care for, though it’s not that crucial, is that the ending drags on for a while. It’s not necessarily that bad, but I kept on wanting to hear more of those smooth-ass vocals.

I had a little difficulty with classifying what genre GAYNGS would belong to (I think I mentioned this in the previous article on them). I would say soul or R&B, but a lot of the album has some featured artists that range from hip hop to rock. Check out the album on Amazon or hit me up for a link, and tell me what you think (especially if I hit you up with a link!).

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[audio:NoSweat.mp3|titles=No Sweat]

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