Saturday, October 31, 2015
Forget about Christmas and motherfuck Thanksgiving. Rap's unofficial holiday is Halloween. These are some of the joints we was bumpin as we draped up the offices in fake cobwebs and went hard on them candy corns. No "Mind Playing Tricks On Me," cause even tho we ain't cranky hardliners like Noz, we must concede that basics have tarnished that song in the same way white people at weddings have committed atrocities against poor old "Humpty Dance." No Hopsin either, because let's face it - the man has too many classics to chose from!
So which city is spookiest? Memphis's reputation rightfully precedes it, but H-Town been keepin it ghoulish for years. '80s NYC seems to have embraced the campier side of Hallowe'en, which is all good wit us - we fux wit the second Evil Dead just as much as the first.
Dana Dane - Nightmares
The Fat Boys - Are You Ready For Freddy?
Ganksta N-I-P - Psycho
Geto Boys - Chuckie
Gucci Mane - Vampire (ft. Trina)
K-Rino - Stalkin'
Lil B - Happy Halloween
Prophet Posse - Favorite Scary Movie
Soulja Boy - Trick Or Treat Motherfucker
Three 6 Mafia - Body Parts (ft. Prophet Posse)
Ultramagnetic MCs - Poppa Large
Whodini - The Haunted House Of Rap
X-Raided - That Siccness (ft. S.A.C, Brotha Lynch Hung, Young Meek & CYCO)
Wednesday, October 28, 2015
If Rodney Dangerfield were alive today he'd be bumping reggaeton whilst snorting lines in the back of his limousine, because it gets no respect. You would think being the living product of globalization would earn the bare minimum of critical attention, but these so-called experts stay lookin down on a music they literally don't understand. Why was grime covered obsessively by a US press that acts like a global phenomenon doesn't exist? Gringos, que pinga!? Whether or not reggaeton tickles your fancy, it possesses the same omnivorous capacity for hybridization that made rap the most dynamic cultural form of the past 40 years.
Fortunately, the rap world has not been so shortsighted as to ignore a music you'll hear blasting out of every souped-up Japanese import in any city with a large Latino constituency. Here are some of the mixed, always entertaining results of the rap and reggaeton crosscultural dialogue. You'll notice most of the rappers are from New York. Who said that city had nothing but stagnant, regressive sticks in the mud? Nuff respect to N.O.R.E. for setting the trend again. What I wouldn't give to hear Max B or Cam'Ron bless a manic riddim wit the Spanish guitars goin' full tilt. Young Thug can get it too. If such a song exists, holla at ya cabrón.
N.O.R.E. - Mas Maiz (ft. Nina Sky, Big Mato, La Negra of LDA, Fat Joe, Lumidee, Chingo Bling & Lil Rob)Voltio - Chulin Culin Chunfly (Remix ft. Residente Calle 13 and Three 6 Mafia)
Wisin & Yandel - Mujeres In The Club (ft. 50 Cent)
Saturday, October 24, 2015
The Palestinian you love to hate is back! Picture my schadenfreude when I realized Future stans would have to endure the latest brain dead ad-libs from rap's reigning king of What does he do again? Y'all hate on Khaled, but the man understands the zeitgeist. He saw that millennials was movin away from McDonald's and BK and got on that slow fast-food wave - boom, Finga Licking Chicken is born. And like Finga Licking Chicken, you got options on a Khaled mixtape. You ain't want chicken? Try some of that lobster, son. You don't fuck wit da MMG Session Players? Here's a side of Beans and Jada.
Act like there's been a better major label mixtape DJ since Clue. Like any true mixtape technician, Khaled checks off so many audiences that any rational listener is only gonna fuck wit about three songs, and maybe only part of those songs. But ay, that's the price of admission to this rap game variety show. Anyone puttin Trick on a song with Future is a'ight in my book, even if I'm ambivalent on the lyrical blah of Yo Gotti. Keyboard warriors, stay at home: Khaled's gonna keep makin money and shouting his name like a giant, dumb toddler. Let the haters hate and watch the chicken pile up.
Wednesday, October 21, 2015
(via Flaming Pablum)
Flippin tru Tony Rettman's NYHC book the other day, I came across a flier for a "Rock Against Rent" show featuring the likes of Antidote, Killdozer, and Stetsasonic. First I was like, "Whoa!" Then I was like, "No way!"
Aging New Wavers, high on dreams sold by Fraud 5 Freddy (Dante Ross wit da comment section ether), have long documented the intermingling of gallery and rec room with such relish you'd think we could cure race relations by building a Mudd Club from sea to shining sea. Outside of the Beasties & Rick Rubin, however, the nexus of hip-hop and hardcore is less publicized. Turns out Stetsasonic also played a Rock Against Racism show with The False Prophets, incorrigible rudeboys The Toasters, and the anarcho-punk band Nausea. A group as fresh as the one depicted on In Full Gear make strange bedfellows with this lot, but feasibly it could have ended with a mass burning of TROOP jackets.
Crossovers of this nature will seem old hat to those of you weaned on FADER Forts and the white guy in Odd Future. I can relate. You're asking yourself, Where's the marketing? What's the angle? What does this particular package of youth culture mean? Maybe, just maybe, there was a time when the only thing being marketed was the chance to mosh, skank, and smurf for equality.
Sunday, October 18, 2015
A man of wisdom once said, "There's only two things certain in this trife life: death and Spanish guitars." When civilization finally annihilates itself, bet there's gonna be some cockroaches carrying on the legacy, one in a sombrero wit his legs splayed out and an acoustic guitar restin on his groinals, the other on the M-I-C talkinbout, "Cockroaches is the hardest species outchea, survivin 'n' thrivin while all these soft-serve mammals got punked by the ultimate wedgie puller."
MAX B - 50'S OF SOUR
This ain't Biggavel's only foray into the exotic delights of sultry strums. There were Max B's before Max B, bawdy Orphic bards spittin da raw and real. Some mistook it for transcendence, but it was actually a finer state of mind known as waviness. Charly Wingate was just the ultimate expression, the final evolution in a process that began with the inception of language. Now Buddens free!
FREEWAY - RING THE ALARM (FT. PEEDI CRAKK & OMILLIO SPARKS)
Finally it ain't a gringo blessin las guitarras. Here's Peedi & co. flippin da Tenor Saw classic boricua style. Maybe da rap bloggers of cockroach Earth will finally give Peedi his due when they typin on they lil cockroach computers wit headphones on the antennae. Big up to Freeway for being an early adapter on that hipster crossover money dat Big Boi now chasing on that album I ain't able to manage caring about.
YUKMOUTH - SAD MILLIONAIRE (FT. PHATS BOSSI & BIG LURCH)
If you wanna make your shit paranoid and world weary, holla at a mariachi band to lace your shit with some Spanish guitars. But if you really wanna put some guac on that chip, do like Yuk and tap a cannibal dusthead for tha hook.
HOT BOYS - NEIGHBORHOOD SUPERSTAR
I always thought Spanish guitars was a New York thing on account of the Puerto Rican influence, but it's really the Bay that had this game on lock. Sixth man of the year tho? That's the great Mannie Fresh!
KANYE WEST - ALL FALLS DOWN
Real talk, Kanye couldn't dress for shit when he came out. Ratty-ass baggy blazers, Aeropostale button-ups, Rocawear jeans-as-sweatpants, and some white Reebok Classics? Mu'fucka was about to rock a straw fedora. Crazy how Ye went from tha I'm so normal and middle class! Look at me, I'm rapping about this college girl's problems! dude when Rhymefest was his ghostwriter, to the grrr i'm so weird and i wear leather pants i like triangles and weird symbols shitty art project he became when Travis Scott turned him into the angular haircut of rap.
Tuesday, October 13, 2015
The bulk of Lil Herb's music is unwelcoming by design: cold and cacophonous, with dense word cascades growled by the agitated son of Tone Loc. It don't make no concessions to the casual listener. The term street rap gets thrown around a lot these days, but it's treated more as a straightforward descriptor than a genre with its own unique characteristics. What differentiates street rap from the gangsta rap of yore is the absence of the broad-stroke blockbusterisms and mythologizing of the latter. It's an attempt at no-frills realism - they makin The French Connection, not Scarface.
As a rapper Herb is one of the most conventional drillmen. Whereas Keef came hot out the gate with a viral song and vid, Herb has built his reputation by delivering goods of consistent and dependable quality. With the possible exception of Mozzy, no one of Herb's generation or kind is writing with as much depth and intensity of detail.
Shy Glizzy gets by more on strength of personality. There ain't much redeeming about his music, which is kind of the point. He plays the villain, Lil Zé rappin about shootin up blocks in an absurd Jerry Lewis voice like the dude about to yell, "Laaady!" any minute. The voice can be a dealbreaker, but it's also his greatest strength. You can rap about atrocities if you sound like a caustic munchkin, and Ima still be waitin with the noogie like, "Come over here you little rascal!"
Not to get all Migos > Beatles on yo' ass, but Zaytoven's name is looking less like bravado than fact with the passing of each year.
Straight up homer, if you want me you can find me down in Dade! My starry eyes might be blind to clumsy raps and cornball lines like "My last name ain't Dumpty, I will never fall off!" but I still believe Carol City Mafia made an overlooked banger. In a city flush with rap money, it's a travesty that there's almost no interest in developing local artists. Sad when Jim Jones is doin more for the city than any of the natives, even if Miami Vampin is stuffed with more doodoo than a septic tank. Carpetbaggers watch ya chains. Rozay, keep ya fat ass in Boca. It's 2015 and Rap Music Hysteria is goin for the gusto.
Saturday, October 10, 2015
That's definitely me in the corner. But could that really be me in the spotlight, losing my capacity to enjoy new rap music? After spending a good portion of my day listening to things I hadn't heard, I still could not find a song better than this one. Thanks to ANU for reblogging Murk, without whom I would have continued ignoring Johnny Cinco and Hoodrich Pablo Juan based on their nondescript-ass rap names. Present company excluded, Atlanta has been hiding a pretty shite year behind the extended victory laps of Future and Young Thug. Here are the songs I listened to that weren't as good as this one, accompanied by takes so hot u gwan need ya oven mitts.
Blac Youngsta - Heavy
Ernest Homie Quan Goes To The Memphis Trap
Colonel Loud ft. Ricco Barrino & Young Dolph - California
Admittedly, I would rather hear this lite funkiness on the radio than another anemic Drizzy grouse-fest.
T.I. ft. Young Thug - Peanut Butter Jelly
Was hoping for a Buckwheat Boyz tribute, but this was still OK. Regardless of quality, every new T.I. song is a bitter reminder that we can never return to the scowling ectomorph with the thick drawl and Adebisi headgear.
Tate Kobang - Bank Rolls
Cool song compromised irretrievably once I heard the original.
2Milly - Milly Rock
Shmoney Dance Redux, with half the fun.
Topdolla Sweizy - I Got Ice
DC rap is a decades long identity crisis.
Lil George - Sauce
Were the creative heights of 808 Mafia worth the years of garbage that followed?
Yung Stakks - Stakk Money
This one is kind of catchy and there are tits in the video.
DJ Drizzle Ft. Young Butta & Lil Spigg - Money Dance
Well...they look like they're having fun. Video features rare and secrete footage of Cincinnati brick buildings.
Scarface ft. Rush - Steer
Face can do whatever the fuck he wants at this point, but this particular roll of the dice is indefensible. Old rappers sweat EDM like 50 year-olds in PR departments sweat social media.
Pooh Hefner ft. Pretty Boy & Iamsu! - Riden Through The Rich
Unremarkable but enjoyable slap.
Wednesday, October 7, 2015
First time I heard Antifreeze: Subzero, Ima be honest, I wasn't feelin that shit. Bad enough the tumescent Transformer on the cover looks like an anime club's cock-crazed hive dream. Then they go and use wackass Papyrus, the official typeface of stores selling Third World trinkets, the ones that reek so strongly of incense it make your nostrils sting, but the owners are really nice and wrap ya trinkets up all lovely in a box w/ tissue paper, and ya moms seems to really like getting them shits for her bday. Still, that shit ain't gangsta. Weeks later I'm able to accept it for what it is: solid Bearfaced music, no more, no less. HD is capable of making slappers, but he really excels at headphone music, the kind of shit you play when you're skulking around the streets at night, blunted and paranoid, or just thinkin on life sober as Judge (which is its own trip).
Unfortunately, he chooses to sound like a rapper twice his age on "Homo Thug." Homophobia has a long and storied history in rap music, so I'd be lying if I said I have problem with that, it's more the humorlessness of it all. Tho we ain't homothug-phobic here at Rpa MUsic HIstseria, we are not above laughing at the homo thug as comic type. But HD's "Homo Thug" lacks even these easy laffs, squandering the rich comic opportunities of homo thug subculture to call Young Thug gay and stupid in unimaginative ways. Oh, and the song sucks. Where's Cam when you need him? There's a man who could truly make bigotry hilarious. You ain't funny, HD. Fire your graphic designer and leave the homo thug raps to the pros! <---- Funnier AND catchier than "Homo Thug!"
Saturday, October 3, 2015
If you've thought of Tha Last Meal in the past 10 years put ya hands up! If you've made it past "Lay Low," make noise! Bought this from a vending machine at a rest stop, one of those warm relics of Eisenhower infrastructure where a man can stretch his legs and empty the tank, maybe cop a Do Or Die CD with a side of hot wings. Da 8th graders had told me to save my loot for one of those Dr. Moreau turkey legs, and I immediately regretted the purchase once I threw my whoadie's Country Grammar CD on the Discman.
15 years later and I still wish I'd got Country Grammar, but Tha Last Meal ain't exactly the turd I once thought. True, Snoop had already ceded artistic control to the Snoop Dogg™ songwriting department, but there's still some worthwhile contributions from the Dr. Dre™ concern, Kokane playin Bootsy, and a still chubby Timbaland, even if "Set It Off" needs to be purged of Snoop and Lady Of Rage. Yet none of them pose a question as awesomely filthy as the one submitted by Suga Free on "Bring It On": "Why did the little girl walk around with a gold fish in her pocket? So she could smell like the big girls!" Game recognize game. Snoop might flirt with the pimp persona, but he's a mere weekender in the presence of the meticulous pageantry and immersion that led a senile Robert Christgau to deem Suga Free "the Klaus Nomi of pimp rap." If anyone can turn out Taylor Swift, it's you playa!