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Dane Johnson
14 January, 2013 6:22 am

In six years, Flying Lotus has released four albums, starting with 1983 leading to his newest, Until the Quiet Comes. Beginning with a foundation of electronic music and hip-hop, he’s quickly evolved, digesting unique sounds and genres, blending samples, live music, and vocals to create something that you can’t prepare for. For those who listened [cont.]

4 October, 2012 2:57 am

It’s possible that heads will never listen to an instrumental or turntablist hip-hop record without comparing it to DJ Shadow’s seminal Endtroducing. That album has reigned supreme for sixteen years as one of, if not the best, hip-hop instrumental albums ever. From the diversity of samples to the gritty vibe, even DJ Shadow himself hasn’t [cont.]

1 August, 2012 1:32 pm

Admittedly, after the group effort of Hail Mary Mallon, expectations were lowered for Aesop Rock’s most recent effort, Skelathon. Are You Gonna Eat That? had it’s moments, but none of them resonated like Aesop’s past work on Labor Days or None Shall Pass. While we knew Aesop had his moments as a producer, the last [cont.]

17 November, 2011 4:23 pm

The tag team division of hip-hop has seen quite a resurgence. With everyone from Kanye an Jay-Z to Jake One and Freeway, forming a solid cohesive sound for an album is coming back in style. Being less single driven and more focused on creating a cohesive sound, this has resulted in some great, if not [cont.]

26 March, 2011 3:38 pm

Monday This is my third time in Austin. The first was for SXSW in 2005. Things have changed. SXSW has been on the national stage most of the last decade, but even during the last six years, things have changed. The music festival hasn’t started officially, but things have been happening since friday due to [cont.]

29 January, 2011 12:28 am

It seems like its been years since MC’s hooked up with one producer exclusively for their LP. Artists like DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince, Guru & Premier, and Pete Rock & C.L. Smooth joined together, creating some of the best albums in hip-hop ever. But lately we’ve seen the trend reinvigorate itself, with [cont.]

17 December, 2010 10:01 pm

Since the record industry effectively imploded, sales might be down, but music is still being made. More importantly, it seems like things are more interesting and bizarre than ever before. Gangrene is a group project between Oh No and The Alchemist, the former a Stones Throw stalwart, the latter being one of the most seasoned [cont.]

2 December, 2010 5:19 am

Right now, Dam Funk is part Dr. Dre, part Madlib and part George Clinton. However this was an evolution, as the early demo tapes that comprise Adolescent Funk show he started more as a disciple of Prince, Michael Jackson and Egyptian Lover. “Fonky Island Life” kicks off the collection which starts with odd samples of [cont.]

26 October, 2010 5:00 pm

Listening to the new 7L and Esoteric album 1212, the first thing I thought was “god damn Esoteric sounds angry”. Then again when you’re an MC and you rep Boston you have every right to be. From Edo G. and the Bulldogs to Guru (who was originally from the New England state) Boston has a [cont.]

27 September, 2010 3:27 am

There aren’t many hip hop albums this year that opened on a better note than Super Chron Flight Bros.’ Cape Verde, which starts off with “Reggie Miller”. Usually thought of as a closer, the first song off of their new LP is a great distillation of their sound. It’s got a laidback, NYC vibe and, [cont.]

8 September, 2010 4:37 pm

It’s rare that after three albums and an EP a band can maintain such a distinctive sound. But the Budos Band are masters of combining nearly every genre that gave birth to hip hop in to one sonic punch to the stomach that never felt so good. They manage to play elements of jazz, afrobeat, [cont.]

19 August, 2010 2:57 pm

Between all eight million plus Wu-Tang affiliated MCs, Killah Priest and his fellow Sunz of Man are some of the few that actually standout. They remain foot soldiers in the grimy, dark ’90′s production / rhyme style, almost to a fault. Not that they can’t pull it off; it’s like being a grandmaster in a [cont.]

11 August, 2010 12:04 am

The last ten years have left the music industry and hip-hop in a strange place. It used to be if you were great, you’d drop a crazy label debut like Nas’ Illmatic or Jay-Z’s Reasonable Doubt. Now if you have talent and ability, it’ll be displayed on mixtapes and web only tracks. Not only that, [cont.]

27 July, 2010 5:11 pm

In the 1970’s there were some phenomenal blaxploitation soundtracks, but the best among them were done by none other than Isaac Hayes. If one was aiming to make a dark and grimy gangster film now, and didn’t turn to El Michel’s Affair you’d be missing out one of the best instrumental groups alive. You probably [cont.]

7 July, 2010 2:46 am

Big Boi’s first “real” solo LP, Sir Luscious Leftfoot: The Son of Chico Dusty, has been a long time coming. Tracks or supposed tracks from the album have been dropping for nearly three years, and they’ve all been excellent. Yet it took moving from Jive to Def Jam for one of the most successful hip [cont.]

6 July, 2010 2:34 am

This is “Rose Garden”, off Shad’s new album TSOL. Watch the video closely.

9 April, 2010 3:18 am

After the leak of “Jump Up In The Air”, it seemed as if we were in for a Parliament Funkadelicallly influenced album from Erkyah Badu.  At first, it was unclear why she would remove the song from the album, but further inspection, its indebted more to Sun Ra, the man who inspired George Clinton.  Not [cont.]

8 April, 2010 10:05 am

Sun finally out, snow melted where you’re at?  Lack of new Mos Def in your life?  Max Tannone who remixed Jay-Z and Radiohead as well as a Beastie Boys Project has a new remix tape out.  Featuring Mos Def over old roots reggae and ska tracks its hard to argue against something like this when [cont.]

24 March, 2010 11:05 pm

A while back a friend proposed the question of who had the better catalogue, Curtis Mayfield or Gil-Scott Heron.  If there’s a modern equivalent to that question it might be Raheem DeVaughn (Curtis Mayfield) or Erykah Badu.  The album kicks off with an intro by Dr. Cornell West, who’s also later featured in multiple interludes [cont.]

19 February, 2010 11:02 pm

There’s two ways to go when your major label deal goes South and the entire industry is upside down. If you’re Freeway, you take the Bun B approach. Guest spots on almost every relevant album or mixtape, new tracks consistently hitting the web, and a label deal with one of the best independents in the [cont.]

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