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David Ma
3 April, 2007 12:00 am

By: David Ma EL-P’s career has been full of triumphs. From Company Flow’s paradigm shifting Funcrusher Plus, to the label successes of Def Jux, EL-P has been in the thick of it all. His production style is completely original, blending thrashy sounds with pulsing urgency into smooth arrangements. Compound that with wide-ranging remixes and the [cont.]

6 March, 2007 12:00 am

     Rza’s production triumphs are legendary. From Wu-Tang to various guest tracks, his style is both recognizable and wide-ranging. His latest endeavor, Afro Samurai: The Soundtrack, Rza showcases instrumental tracks, collaborative efforts and epic film scores all in one. Although the music here is predominantly for the Afro Samurai cartoon series, the result is a [cont.]

4 February, 2007 12:00 am

    Saafir’s strong voice and vocal presence remain in tact, and make no mistake; he still has presence and obvious drive. Good Game: The Transition finds Saafir’s displaying his know-how for salvaging tracks, as he combines smooth deliveries with  some wordplay. Songs such as “One of The Hardest” and “Get Busy” illustrate his unique cadence, [cont.]

12 October, 2006 12:00 am

     If Tommy Guerrero isn’t one of the most overlooked musicians of the last few years, we don’t know who is.        Since his days as a pro skater he’s been in the spotlight, garnering attention for his skills and creativity. But it was in 1995, with the release of the now revered Backintheday ten-inch [cont.]

5 October, 2006 12:00 am

      Dan the Automator is no doubt one of hip-hop’s most creative and technically sound producers. 1996′s Dr. Octagon, perhaps his most heralded project, helped redefine and regenerate interest in hip-hop during a lull of creativity at the time. His projects are revered, and his long list of collaborators is only matched by a handful [cont.]

28 August, 2006 12:00 am

   Living Legends’ latest release is a pleasant surprise. After years of putting out music on a grassroots level, selling tapes from their backpacks on Bay Area streets and throwing cheap concerts, the collective’s recent material has lacked the charm and focus of their older work. Although this is a problem with overly prolific artists [cont.]

15 July, 2006 12:00 am

   Tadd Mullinix, also known as, Dabrye has no doubt mastered his equipment, garnering swirling melodies, solid sequencing, booming bass and a barrage of blips and bleeps that mesh together as his signature sound. With his latest release, Two/Three, he delivers what you’d expect from a Dabrye record – dark beats that retain the foundations [cont.]

28 June, 2006 12:00 am

   Prozack Turner is a good rapper. Since his days with Foreign Legion, he’s been a witty, energized and silly emcee. On his newest solo effort, Bangathon, he’s surrounded himself with many solid producers and rappers – most notably Rhymesayer’s Brother Ali and StonesThrow’s Oh No. At this juncture in his developing career, Prozack’s cadence compounded [cont.]

14 June, 2006 12:00 am

    Boots Riley and Pam the Funkstress don’t receive the recognition they deserve. For over a decade, the Oakland duo has released four critically acclaimed albums filled with funk, socio-political commentary, and attitude. On their latest effort, The Coup is fresher, angrier and rowdier than ever.     Their fifth release, Pick a Bigger Weapon, is [cont.]

8 June, 2006 12:00 am

Adam Drucker, Anticon’s oddball emcee Dose One, is never at a loss for words. For more than a minute now, the elusive rapper/singer/spoken word artist has released a slew of revered music projects that bear his name. Whether it is spoken word (Pelt), collaborations (13 & God, Peeping Tom, Prefuse 73, Boom Bip), side projects [cont.]

5 April, 2006 12:00 am

“Give me your address, so I can send you my new cd,” immediately replied Joey Beats when I approached him for this interview. Perhaps one of the most underrated current producers, Rhode Island’s Joey Beats isn’t only humble and approachable, but is also extremely skillful at what he does. The production half of the Non-Prophets’ [cont.]

15 February, 2006 12:00 am

   Dose One’s Ha is as disjointed and weird as you would expect from Anticon’s oddball emcee. With songs that encompass a wide array of production techniques and rapping styles, one can surely find something they like-or hate-from this album.    The title track finds Dose singing over strange, slow moving melodic bleeps and clicks. As [cont.]

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