Verbal imagery is a special thing, an device used by the illest of emcees. Back in the day, you could hear verbal imagery from every prominent rhyme-spitta, in fact 'Pac used some of the most metaphorically visual language of any poet.
These days, you have to resort to the negative altitudes, to find such capabilities. Listen to Lif's verse on this jawn, shit is something special.
February 28, 2010
Verbal imagery is a special thing, an device used by the illest of emcees. Back in the day, you could hear verbal imagery from every prominent rhyme-spitta, in fact 'Pac used some of the most metaphorically visual language of any poet.
I threw up the first part of this series a week or two ago, and today is as good a day as any to finish 'er up. In the below clips, dukes has some quality interviews that range in personality and cryptic-ness. I have to say the 'Mega interview is my favorite, but I'm also biased:
Kay Slay Interview Pt. 1
February 27, 2010
This some experimental shit, for me anyway. First time I heard this jawn on Hustlenomics, I had to rewind for whatever reason. Sounds like some type stoopid shit, but on the real Pak Man stays in your head.
An older cut off Naughty By Nature's self-titled first album. The Lakim Shabazz feature is the definite byproduct of Naughty By Nature being taken in by Queen Latifah of the former Flavor Unit.
Gotta admit that Lakim drops some serious heat on this jawn, and the hook is one of the gods. That jazzy riff, the D.O.C. sample...
February 26, 2010
I remember copping this way back on the strength of Blame One's involvement with this group. And my decision has been proven a wise one, if only by the picture of the white dude, second to the right, clutching a 40. That pitcher is the type of shit I want to hear on wax.
And believe that Moderation, is a type ill cut, easily worth your time.
I've devised a hypothesis of sorts that most boom-bap releases have a track with the same title as the album. Of these tracks, the majority of them are the illest off the whole album.
This hypothesis is true for Mic Geronimo's The Natural. Probably my favorite cut off the whole album, although Mic G packs quite a few classics onto this album. That's sayin' something.
February 25, 2010
I never thought I'd be posting any jawns like this, but for whatever reason, shit's been stuck in my head since I heard it in the morning. For better or for worse, NoCanDo adopts a very eclectic approach to rappin' on Jimmy The Lock. Dukes mixes AutoTune with elements of Busdriver-esque fast rap, and Jae Millz punchline rap for Hurry Up And Wait. No gem by any means, but might could be worth a listen.
Some UK hip-hop fo' that ass. You can find this one on Braintax's Biro Funk.
The Grip is some darker shit, with some crazy instrument used on the loop, sounds somewhat like a sitar. And over such an instrumental, Braintax drops some historical knowledge, all empirical like and shit.
February 24, 2010
You can find this one on Guru's Jazzmatazz Vol.4, on some smooth jazz-rap shit. Sounds good in essence, however the Jazzmatazz series has been plagued throughout it's existence. On Vol.4, Guru got some weak features, especially in terms of the guest spots that typically appear on a Jazzmatazz tape.
Still, Bob James and Common together on a single track sounds like an instant success. But, the below video might make you change your mind. Sadly, that might be the official video for this jawn. Think this.
I've really been getting into The Loyalists' Redemption as of late. There are some really spread out guest spots on that album. Louis Logic and Planet Asia aren't exactly two names that I think of in the same light.
That said, Compatible Opposites is some type ill shit with masterful production.
February 23, 2010
For the longest time, I was convinced that Rakaa Irscience was the illest flow-spitta from the Dilated Peoples, however, only recently did I notice that dukes ain't really that lyrical, but compensates with his delivery. Still, on this jawn off Soundbombing II, Rakaa, Ev, and Tash of the 'Liks, break shit down something proper.
I'll admit that I wasn't really feeling Only Built 4 Cuban Linx 2 like most were. Shit possessed some ill knockers, but in the end it completely lacked the charisma of the original.
Still, when New Wu came out, it was a reminder of what made the Clan such an important part of hip-hop history. Mef's hook ain't nothing to fuck wit'.
February 22, 2010
After the mind-numbing day I endured today, it feels heavenly to enjoy the eternal vibes of Ornette's Coleman all but prophetic The Shape Of Jazz To Come. Although I'm no expert by any means on Coleman's discography, he seems to have developed a knack of slower-tempo'ed jawns that sooth the soul. And if such isn't the case for the whole of the man's discography, it is the case for Peace (word to Bob Marley).
I just copped a large part of Juvie's discog over this past weekend. I'll acknowledge that I have a mild case of ignorance when it comes to the records released in the early years of Cash Money existence, however I believe Juve The Great is one of the better releases on that label. A little less Mannie Fresh only means that DJ Fr-Fr-Fresh omits the filler and includes ill instrumentals.
Not to say that Slow Motion is an opus of any means, but the slow beat and the throwed rhymes are worth a listen at least.
February 21, 2010
Some early '90's 5%'er rap from the Poor Righteous Teachers off Holy Intellect. Although shit comes off type preachy at moments, the production on Holy Intellect is surprisingly dope. Especially Poor Righteous Teachers, which features one of the most simplistic yet illest instrumentals of the whole decade. No lie, peep game.
I found this one on L Da Headtoucha's Destined For Greatness tape, but the official release of this jawn is the b-side of L's Too Complex 12". Real talk, it was difficult to pick a single favorite track of that tape, because it is chock-full of cold gems. No bullshit, Da Headtoucha has one of the greatest ears for instrumentals of any rapper past and present. One of the few dukes who can produce a tape that is ill from front to back.
And trust, that ain't shit weak about It's Your Life.
February 20, 2010
For a group with as much golden-era acclaim as the Fu-Schnickens, you might expect something other than a less decipher-able version of Das EFX. Still, they got the Five Foot Assasin on the track, and he rips shit something proper over production by "A Tribe Called Quest". Doesn't say whether it was Tip or Shaheed on the instrumental, but either way shit sounds like an ill party jawn.
Above The Law is some early west-coast shit with massive amounts of funk. Dudes are best known for their '90 release Livin' Like Hustlers, however their truly best release has to be the '91 Vocally Pimpin'. Some truly timeless shit, no bullshit.
4 The Funk Of It was the focal point of this tape, as there was a radio edit and an instrumental of this jawn included on the EP. For good reason, shit knocks something proper.
February 19, 2010
I swore off listening to 'Pac a little while ago upon the inherent assumption that the man only made jawns like Ambitionz Az A Ridah and so on. This is a posse cut off of All Eyez On Me, that features a few no-name weed carriers for the Makaveli organization.
Real talk, I've rarely heard this sincere of clarity on a 'Pac jawn. Rick Rock turns in an immaculate effort with this production.
This jawn comes off 50's Power Of The Dollar, the infamous first album that ignited Fiddy's rise to the top.
Looking back at it now, 50 had the perfect strategy to succeed for the late 90's/early '00's. He reached out to the underground hip-hop crowd at first with Power Of The Dollar, and from there he adapted a commercial sound that expanded album after album.
Real talk though, Power Of The Dollar is a gully album. Shit's got some genuine knockers on there, such as I'm A Hustler.
February 18, 2010
Anytime you see the above image anywhere on a video, you know shit ain't nothin' but troof bombz (word to Rekstizzy). Anyway, below I chronicled some of the best interviews ever conducted by the Ig'nant Witted captain. Dukes has classics out the ass cheeks, believe that. The two-part DJ Neil Armstrong interview is some of the realest shit I've ever laid eyes on. Some type ill shit with one of the most underrated disk jockeys of all time.
Enough jockery, please peep below:
Statik Selektah Interview
Aforementioned DJ Neil Armstrong Interview Part 1
I'll come through with a part 2 sometime soon. In the meantime, show dukes some love on his site.
I apologize that it's taken me this long to share this jawn. Back a few years ago, Stress: The Extinction Agenda was in steady rotation on the daily. Prince Po and Pharoahe Monch were two of my favorite emcees to ever clutch a mic.
The production was the main reason I dug the album, but ain't no denying Po and Monch's lyrical prowess on jawns such as Stress.
February 17, 2010
Possibly my favorite Sean Carter song is 'loosely' based on this Slick Rick jawn, and one could see why. Ricky has what could be called "charisma", and he's got an abundant supply 'a that shit.
Slick Rick provides some exorbitant rhymes, but what really makes The Ruler's Back so great is the instrumental and the memorable hook. Jam Master Jay outdid himself on this one.
The P Brothers' The Gas was one of the few albums released in '08 that satisfied true school east coast heads. The Gas is some truly dystopian 1984-esque shit, so it's natural that comparisons to the like of Cannibal Ox would occur.
Truly, it's nothing like that. Some gully NY shit, equipped with some of the illest production in modern memory. Real talk, Paul S and DJ Ivory are two of the premier beatsmith's of the current generation.
February 16, 2010
Apologies for the above picture. This jawn is off The Black Wall Street Journal, a tape The Game made back in the day when he was still serious with Black Wall. Game's up-and-comer performs the whole track, and Game cleans up on the hook.
Shit sounds a bit like 50, but on some Many Men shit, nahmean?
Kugee Rap won this month's poll for the illest Cold Chillin' emcee. Check it here. To be honest, this one was no contest, KGR's work with DJ Polo is nothing short of legendary, and ain't nothing on the Cold Chillin' catalog fuckin' with 4,5,6 in terms of illness.
So yeah, I can get down this decision. I rocks with the peoples choice on this one. Again, you can check the results here, and below I assembled a few gems from Kool G Rap's Cold Chillin' days.
Streets Of New York
On The Run (Al Pacino remix)
Ill Street Blues
Two To The Head (feat. Scarface, Ice Cube & Bushwick Bill)
Road To The Riches
Men At Work
Take 'Em To War (feat. B1 & MF Grimm)
February 15, 2010
I'm not entirely sure how I acquired DJ Bless' A Perfect Murder, but it's nothing you should go out of your way to look for. On some over-dramatized horror shit at times, but there are a few gems to be found.
For whatever reason, I really admire this instrumental. Despite it's simplistic nature, shit really knocks.
Everliven Sound is Cymarshall Law and Skit Slam. These two crafted Freedom back in '08, which is where you can find Original Rudeboys. For whatever reason, I like the jawns that explore regional dialect. I'm pretty sure that 'rudeboy' is used in some part of British subculture. What, you never played Fifa Street?
February 14, 2010
The Lords are well-acclaimed in the hip-hop world, but they seem to be a bit gimmicky at times. On a Das Efx/M.O.P. tip almost. Can't front on the LOTUG production though, DJ Lord Jazz has created some of the most potent productions of the 20th century. The sampling he uses on Psycho, is quite out there, but it works in the grand scheme of things.
I'm not entirely sure how I got my hands on this album, but I'm glad I did, 'cos this jawn Supernova is a gem. Flavor Flav might award it 'Cold Medina' status.
I believe Arch Angel is the producer, and King Medallion is the rhyme-spitta, ill lyric equippa (dukes rhymes with Planet Asia on occasion). On Supernova, they craft an opus of immeasurable proportions.
February 13, 2010
At first, I was somewhat skeptical of Donny Goines and his adoration in the blog-rap world. Still am quite a bit skeptical, to be honest. I admire that dukes crafted a tape based on The Breakfast Club, but apart from a few cuts, shit was pretty weak.
Still, when you assemble an all-star squadron like Term, Reks, Rain, and Big Lou, you can imagine that shit'll bang. Especially when Statik Selektah's producing.
Kool Keith is a strange guy, but he produces some ill nonsensical rapp. For his Dr. Octagon project, he enlisted the help of Dan The Automator, and he crafted an left-brained opus. For real, if you can get into the eccentric Dr. Octagonecologyst, you'll be in for a treat. Think Deltron 3030 with even more incomprehensible rhymes.
Still Real Raw is some ill shit. You hear that production? You hear Keith Octagon using 'affect' in the proper context?
February 12, 2010
Some sing-songy Motown rapp fo' that ass. It's quite possible that Obie Trice may have developed into one of this generations most talented and influential rhyme-slangers had he not drawn such great stylistic preferences from 'Slim Shady'.
Upon listening to Second Round's On Me, you can definitely hear the potential that young Obie had, especially on jawns like Violent. But then you hear the hook, and realize why his career never transpired.
Due to my extreme lack of time at the moment, I threw together this unimaginative post. The same site I mentioned for the J-Love interview, also conducted an interview with Meyhem Lauren.
I personally feel that Lauren was a much better interview subject, and I would definitely recommend checking this interview. Below are some excerpts, and this is the link to the whole thing.
How do you feel about the current style of rap that is beginning to take over the hip-hop scene today?
MEYHEM: On the real, I’m doing the only thing I know how to do, and that’s me. I don’t look down or condemn niggaz for making a certain type of song or music. It just kills me that niggaz are scared to be themselves. When I was coming up, I’d listen to all types of shit from Kool G Rap and M.O.P, to Tribe and Wu... They were all completely different, but they were all ill nah'mean? Nowadays it’s like everybody’s on the next man's dick. It’s disgusting! As for that bling bling shit, personally it’s not my choice of music to make or listen to, but if a niggaz livin’ like that then let them do them. I also understand that niggaz gotta make radio singles and all that shit. Cool, but when a nigga makes a whole album about the same shit, it gets annoying. It’s fucked up because the youth gets fed this bullshit. They begin to think that that’s the only thing they can rap about. I can’t even count the amount of times that I've seen a young nigga with scuffed kicks, dirty jackets, no shape up, etc... Yet they’ll kick 100 bars about rims and assorted color diamonds. Niggaz need to wake the fuck up for real.
How'd you hook up with J-Love?
MEYHEM: J-Love Nigga! That’s my man nah'mean? We from the same hood, and cool with the same people, so the merging of two of the illest minds to inhabit the planet was inevitable. The first time I met J was through Lo’. I was in tenth grade rockin’ a cream rings jacket and my man Al Greens "the living weapon" was like, "Yo Mey my man has that same jacket" and I was like, "NAAAAAAAAAAAAA he doesn’t have this jacket". He was like, "Yea J-Love" and I was like "The Dj Nigga?!" The rest is history. We did Lo’ deals for a minute before I even told him I rhymed. We were cool on some round the way/Lo shit first.
Again the link is here.
February 11, 2010
Not that I doubt any of y'all don't have this track, but shit's been catching mad wreck lately, so for the sake of coherency, I figured I'd throw it up. Jigga don't sound so tough on this jawn, especially compared to Christoff, come to think of it, dukes might could should have superimposed his Dead Prez II rhymes unto this track.
Still, son, ain't you know that the mafia keep cannons in they Mark Buchanan's?
Figured I'd try some new shit out.
WildStyle is the first hip hop motion picture. Released all the way back in '83. Back when Juice 'Pac was still in middle school, Friday Ice Cube was just starting high school, and Brown Sugar Mos Def was still in elementary school, numerous hip-hop pioneers embarked on the cinematic enterprise of WildStyle. Look at the names on the re-released DVD cover. Grandmaster Flash, the Cold Crush Brothers, Fab 5 Freddy, Busy Bee. Not to mention that Grandmixer DST and the Rock Steady Crew also made appearances.
Still, all that ain't got shit to do with the actual movie itself. Like Style Wars, which was released almost simultaneously with WildStyle, the whole film is anchored around graffiti. It's no masterpiece by any means, but is definitely worth a watch for anyone interested in hip-hop cinema, an admittedly shallow sub-genre.
This upload of WildStyle has been up for two years now, so the statistical gods seem to favor the probability of it staying up for a little longer. You can also download from Google Vids if you're so inclined. Link here. Lastly, let me know the thoughts, if this is a feature worth continuing.
February 10, 2010
Those who know Kane's discog, should recognize that Daddy's Home was a 'comeback' album of sorts for Big Pops. All sorts of weak shit preceding that album, and you know this...man.
Anyway, the album-titled track is one of the slower jawns in Kane's discog, regardless it's some remarkably ill shit. For real, let this shit play for the three minutes, and catch yourself involuntarily nodding your head.
You probably already know J-Love from the mixtape game. Dukes has made best-of tapes for any and every respectable rhyme spitta from the '90's. He has some remarkably annoying drops, but is still somewhat respected among his counterparts.
Anyway, this former online mag called Vintage Gear Addicts, caught up with him for an interview a few years back. Real talk, VGA is thorough with theirs. I'm not all that into clothing and the like, but the depth and knowledge that these dudes possess is awe-inspiring.
Anyway, below you can find a few excerpts, and you can read it in it's entirety here.
I know as far as music people wonder about music credential. With an MC it’s easier to get a feel of what they have to say. I’ve always held a personal respect for the DJ; cause anyone who knows hip hop knows that all of this started because of the DJ… When did you start Dj’ing, and who were some of your early influences?
DJ J-LOVE: Probably like 93’ 94, around the same time that everything else was poppin off for me really... I never really looked up to nobody; it was my love for music for the most part… I like certain niggas, but it wasn’t like, “Oh my god I want to be like this nigga or nothing like that... I had respect for niggas like Kid Capri, Grandmaster Flash, Africa Bambata, Love Bug Starsky, you know certain niggas and shit but I never idolized no man, I just gave respect where respect was due…
What were you up to in the 90’s before you started dropping mix tapes? I know that your music background goes way back, so let everyone know how that all came about.
DJ J-LOVE: : I was just wildin’ out man... making money however I can, counterfeit money whatever. Music always been there… I was like seven years old walking around with like 40 cassettes in my pockets n’ shit. That’s crazy cuz’ one time I got frisked; I had the 25 on me and a fuckin’ knife, and I had so many cassettes in my pockets, them niggas didn’t even feelem’ cuz I had hopped the train in the city n shit… those times were crazy but it is what it is.
Everyone knows J-Love for the mix tapes and all the hip hop but what a lot of people don’t know is that you got a crazy lo’ game going on as well. When did you really start getting into rockin’ lo?
DJ J-LOVE: Like late 93’- 94’ I just been kept it rockin’ since back then. I’m not like these new jack little niggas know what I’m saying? All of a sudden niggas is rocking polo n’ shit like cuz’ Kanye West or fucking eBay or whatever the fuck it is… Niggas used to be nervous! They couldn’t even walk the streets with they lo’ like some kids may have had Polo, but they had to keep in their closets cuz they’d get smacked; niggas would like lick they palm and just open hand smack niggas to take niggas shit. But niggas know me man, I got pictures when I was like 80 pounds lighter wearing the same Indian head I got now; niggas know what it is.
Speaking of, J-Love is white. Again, you can read the interview in it's entirety here.
February 9, 2010
You can find this one on the 9th & Buckshot album Chemistry. Although most underground heads are already well-versed on the dynamics of 9th and the Buckshot shorty, there are those unfortunate few.
Anyway, 9th tries his best at a Primo impression on Food For Thought, and comes up with a remarkably fluid product. As for Buckshot, this ain't no Black Moon-type shit, but it's certainly no Survival Skill either. Take the medium of both spectrum's.
It pains me to hear that my dukes John Jackson can't spit, primarily because of jawns such as this. Ain't shit that's gonna be remembered years from now, but it knocks for the moment.
Fabo only enlists Red Cafe for the hook, but imagine the illness that could have transpired if the two of 'em would have spit twofold.
February 8, 2010
As you probably already know, this jawn comes off John Coltrane's Blue Train. Generally speaking, the whole album is worth copping, as it's only five tracks, and they all hold their own, even 50 years after the initial release date.
I'm Old Fashioned is slow, and relies on Coltrane's slower riffs that bite at you on occasion, but all the while soothing all malevolence.
I've been making an conscious effort to cop more Screw tapes as of late. This 'ere is part one of said effort. Just a few days ago, I copped South Siders, sides A&B.
Apparently, DJ Screw really admired C-Bo, so Stompin' In My Steel Toes seems like a fair place to start. Although the OG version doesn't sound half as gully as the S&C version.
NOT THE S&C VERSION
February 7, 2010
Not many people know about this album, which is a damn shame, since this shit is straight classic from intro to outro. Coop MC was a Texas based rapp slanger, who used a great deal of G-Funk among his gangsta-derived rhymes.
I can imagine there's countless TX classics from the mid-90's, but what makes Home Of The Killers so special is the adaptation of so many styles. Shit's laid-back in an almost indescribable manner, and is accompanied by the funkiest breaks one will ever lay ears on. Most importantly, Coop MC stays consistent for 12 straight jawns, and never duplicates the previous song, always bringing something new to the table.
Although the R&B hooks are type trite, this shit is easily worth the download, and probably worth your monies if you can find it at a reasonable price.
Hangin' At 2
Home Of The Killers
Where To Cop From:
Yeah, shit's somewhat hard to find.
You already know that Chapter 13 drops straight heat right? Although few have heard of the Chicago-based group, know that their release Nevermore's Asylum is some uncannily ill shit.
The craziest thing about it is how every member of Ch. 13 can also produce with remarkable prowess. Young Valentine has chops, and you should already know that Rashid Hadee is a production god.
February 6, 2010
East Coast Avengers is The Trademarc, DC The Midi Alien, and Esoteric. Together they released Prison Planet, which attempted to be the definitive answer to conservatism in the media (see Kill Bill O'Reilly).
When you temporarily ignore the Immortal Technique-esque aspect to the East Coast Avengers, you stumble upon right coast odes such as East Coast Overdose, which has one of the illest hooks of modern memory.
The Lawtown murdera. Someone just recently crafted a masterful compilation of Scientifik's non-album jawns, that features immaculate overtures a plenty.
Internal Affairs features an great left coast funk sample and some drum-laden heavy bass.